The Canarian tourism industry is preparing to face a high season, which was abruptly paralyzed by widespread confinement in the UK since 5 November and the recommendation not to travel from Germany on the same date. Both markets contribute more than half of the travelers seeking sun in the Canary Islands in the middle of the harsh winter in central Europe.

The second attempt starts on December 2, the date on which the confinement in the United Kingdom is lifted. Canarian Executive sources confirm that they have maintained Meetings with large British tour operators such as Jet2 and Germans such as TUI and the conclusion is the same: there is a great demand from travelers to spend safe holidays in the Canary Islands. The archipelago has positioned itself as the autonomous community in Spain least affected by contagion, cwith a rate of 77 infected per 100,000 inhabitants. Safety and good temperature, two qualities that no other destination in Europe meets right now.

The forecasts managed by the Canary Islands Executive is close December with 50% of the same figures for 2019, which would mean operating 18,000 flights and receiving two million travelerss. The great beneficiary would be the Gran Canarias airport, with more than half of operations and passengers.

Jorge Marichal, president of the Spanish Confederation of Hotels and Tourist Accommodation (Cehat), is not so optimistic. “There will be many countries that are going to continue with mobility restrictions and it will all depend on which areas of the UK will be confined. Another crucial aspect will be the approval of the antigen test and its validation to certify that the tourist is not infected”Emphasizes Marichal, who believes that with antigens, the opening of tourism can be sustained over time. “It would give the tour operator time to schedule flights and organize the distribution of tourists. It would be an objective and fair measure that would preserve health, but would not impede mobility ”.

It was last Monday 23 when the state regulation that obliges foreign tourists to bring a negative PCR came into force to access Spain. The Canarian Executive trusts that Foreign Health, which has given itself one week to assess the operation of the system, will approve on Tuesday 1 that the PCR or antigen tests will have the same validity to allow foreign tourists to enter Spain to enjoy of your vacation. “In the Canary Islands we are taking for granted that access to the destination will not be slowed down by an expensive test that hinders access”, Say those same sources of the Canarian Executive.

Good expectations that have been endorsed by tour operators. Jet2 stressed last week that there is a strong latent demand to travel to the Canary Islands. Jet2 has nine bases in Ireland and the United Kingdom and is the first British tour operator to the Canary Islands, with a market share of 40%. Along the same lines, TUI, the largest British tour operator, has revised up its forecasts for the Canarian market in winter and has confessed in its meetings with the Canarian Government, which hopes to reach 300,000 German travelers throughout the winter.

Airlines also foresee a substantial increase in passenger traffic. Good proof of this is the increase in routes with the archipelago of Ryanair and Jet2. Irish airline It will put four additional weekly flights to the Canary Islands from December 17 from Manchester airport. Specifically, it will add three frequencies on the route that leads to Lanzarote and one to Fuerteventura. It will also add four additional weekly flights to the archipelago from Milan, with two frequencies to Gran Canaria and Tenerife, respectively. For its part, Jet2 has a schedule of flights to four Canary Islands airports (Gran Canaria, Tenerife, Lanzarote and Fuerteventura), with nine weekly frequencies to Tenerife, eight to Gran Canarias and Lanzarote and six to Fuerteventura.

The archipelago concentrates 26% of trips to Spain

Travelgate. The Travelgate technological platform, which analyzes more than 20,000 reservations and 3,000 million searches daily, grouping the offer of 300 hotel service websites and 15 global flight websites, reveals that the Canary Islands concentrated 25.8% of bookings in the week of November 16-22. Far behind are Andalusia, with 13.9%, and Catalonia, with 11.9%.

Short stays. The data from the platform also corroborates two other trends linked to the coronavirus: last minute bookings and short stays. 24% of people who book trips to Spain do so on the last day and 43% book for a single day of stay.

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