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Spain and Greece use different methods to attract returnees


Francina Armengol explained why the summer tourist season is so important to the Balearic Islands in Spain when she highlighted the economic devastation caused by the coronavirus – which collapsed last year and is alarming. 24 percent.

“The economy is in shambles,” said the head of the islands of Mallorca, Menorca and Ibiza, which a good year attracts 14m foreign visitors. On the eve of the new tourist season, about one-fifth of the approximately 1,000 hotels are open.

Balearics problems are known even in Spain, where the 2020 growth was the worst in developed countries. But it is shared by other Spanish and Greek islands that have been hit hard by the epidemic and are preparing to return to the tourist attractions hoping to save their lives.

German tourists are already returning, providing assistance to retailers and retailers. But the difference between success and failure lies only in the success of returning visitors from the UK.

Spain on Friday said it would send UK tourists from May 24; Greece opened its UK tour last month. But all of them remain outside Britain’s “green list” where UK citizens can go without strict testing and isolation.

Before the turn of the tourist season, the islands of Spain and Greece are moving in different directions.

Spain waited a long time to open up to British tourists even if it re-formed the EU guidance.

Greece is on the move, is already opening up, vaccinating people on predominantly hospitable islands, and welcoming foreign nationals who have been vaccinated against the EU’s health control system.

“Some places play reckless games and sometimes there are reckless thoughts,” Armengol said. Health is important. ”

He also mentioned the hard curvors of the Balearics – very different from Madrid, which has long sought to loosen restrictions – and to improve access to and from land. The incidence of 14 days of Balearics disease is less than one-third of Spain’s total seven days dose it’s a little under UK.

Based on these statistics, Spain is forcing the UK to re-evaluate its destination and not the rest of the world. He believes this will allow British travelers – the second largest tourist destination in the Balearics after Germany and the largest source in all of Spain – to return to the islands and elsewhere.

The significance of this was confirmed this week when the UK government delivers its advice wherever it does not see it as “green”. Grant Shapps, the UK’s trade secretary, confirmed that visitors from “amber” countries such as Spain or Greece should undergo several tests and check unless people return to the UK. “If it’s an ‘amber’ or ‘red’ country, please don’t go on vacation,” he stressed.

The return of British tourists is an important economic factor in Spain and Greece. All encounters fell by about 80% last year; all want to return this year at about half the 2019 rate.

In general, tourism accounts for about 12% of Spanish production, in Greece accounting for about a fifth of output. Corfu, Britain’s most popular tourist destination, depends on about 90% of the direct or indirect destination, according to tourism, according to Charalmbos Voulgaris, chief of the hotel’s island organization. He warned that if the summer is as bad as 2020 “it could be dangerous”.

Too bad, Greece said in April that UK visitors were welcomed. This spread to all countries this month. It is the first EU country to allow Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine, which has not yet been approved by the drug authorities or WHO, to enter without isolation.

“Russia is a very important market for us,” Kyriakos Mitsotakis, Greece’s prime minister, told the Financial Times. “We are strictly following EU rules, but when it comes to the one-week reception in Greece who have received the Sputnik vaccine, I do not see any problem.”

The country is also maintaining its own security measures to keep tourist attractions safe. Thirty-two small Greek islands have already received public immunizations and have been declared the country’s first “No Covid” vaccine. The government intends to vaccinate another 36 islands by the end of May and 19 major ones by the end of June.

But Greece is not setting up parallel routes with the Balearics on its way back and forth to its nearly 100 inhabited islands. Instead, he expects the rest of the world to make a green list for the UK.

Passengers disembark at Corfu Island in Greece this month © Adonis Skordilis / Reuters

British officials have indicated that the list, which was updated earlier next month, will be more visible on the islands as much as possible – and prioritize the UK’s largest markets. Portugal, which has already opened a tour of tourism, is the only EU country in the UK’s green list.

“We store information on any of the islands we read frequently, as we do with countries and regions,” says UK Transport.

This approach could mean that the Balearics and the Canary Islands could make the British feel better throughout Spain. But it could mean trouble for Greece, whose disease it is 80 percent than Spain, according to the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control.

Shapps told FT that it was doubtful that “people have a long time to wait for other countries to join the green list”, citing progress in the EU vaccine program.

In any case, Greece is looking away. By the end of the month they will have more flights from the US than they were even before the epidemic.

“This is not a normal summer season,” said Akis Skertsos, an assistant prime minister. “Security is a problem. . . We want strangers to trust us. ”


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