The Canary Islands take advantage of the gas crisis in Europe to attract tourists

The Ministry of Tourism begins its promotion in Germany and from there it will take it to seven other European cities at the beginning of October. / CARRASCO

Tourist reservations are still 25% below 2019 today. The sector anticipates a "good winter" although the pre-covid level will not be reached due to the recession in Europe

Silvia Fernandez

The Ministry of Tourism of the Government of the Canary Islands will launch itself fully into Europe in the coming weeks and
will launch promotional campaigns in eight source markets: Germany, United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Finland in order to attract the largest number of tourists to the islands taking advantage of high energy prices and the foreseeable lack of gas this winter.

The campaign will be aimed at different segments, such as those over 55 years of age, and in it the islands will be presented as "the best refuge". "It is a window of opportunity for the islands," she said yesterday
Minister of Tourism, Yaiza Castillawhich considers that the archipelago is the ideal place for those who want to escape the cold, gain health and save money in the winter months.

A quick analysis of the data from the
electricity prices in these countries realizes that traveling to the islands is a saving option: in Germany, for example, the megawatt hour has skyrocketed and has gone from about 30 euros in December 2021 to 650 euros in August and the forecast is that in 2023 exceed 1,000 euros.

The
inflation that is expected in some countries and that could even be 18%-20%, as in the United Kingdom, and on much higher prices than the islands explain the strategy of the Government of the Canary Islands. With this campaign, which will be carried out in Europe and the peninsula, the aim is to encourage the winter season in the Canary Islands, which is arriving with great uncertainty.

Reservations are 25% lower than 2019

For now the
tourist reservations in winter for the archipelago they are 25% lower than in 2019, according to close sources. The data is positive considering that, since the covid, habits have changed and now tourists book with less time in advance.

In the coming weeks and depending on how the situation evolves, these figures could go up or down.

Airlines are optimistic and have actually improved their seat forecasts. The
air connectivity for winter it is today 31% higher than 2019, according to data handled by the Ministry of Tourism. 7.1 million seats are expected with the winter, which is 1.7 more than in 2019. With Germany the increase is 31.7%, in 423,364 seats,

These forecasts will be adjusted based on the evolution of the market in the coming months.

In any case,
the president of the Federation of Hospitality and Tourism Entrepreneurs (FEHT) of Las Palmas, José María Mañaricua, indicated yesterday that the winter "will be good" in the Canary Islands although it will not reach the levels of 2019. "The recession in Europe, the energy crisis and the rise in costs will affect the income of families and their availability of money. As much as they say, people will travel in smaller numbers », he assured.

The recovery to the pre-covid level will not arrive until 2024

Mañaricua applauded the campaign launched by the Ministry of Tourism, although he warned that the decision to travel will ultimately depend on the availability of
tourist income. “The promotional campaign is very good and it will help but, as the situation is, some will be able to travel and others will not,” she said.

As he pointed out, there has never been a crisis in Europe that has benefited the Canary Islands. “In 2009 we fell to the ground. Soil we have been full when the Mediterranean closed, "said Mañaricua, who considers that until 2024 the Canary Islands will not recover the levels of tourism of 2019.

So far this year, with data from July,
The Canary Islands continue with 10% less tourism than in 2019. The islands have received 755,000 fewer foreign tourists than before covid.

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