Jose Luis Zoreda, vice president of Exceltur, describes the positive situation in the tourism sector as "an unprecedented travel rage." Employers are optimistic about the future: Tourism GDP will close 2019 with 98% activity, compared to the record-breaking year of 2019, which saw 151,798 millions euros of activity. This is 10,000 million more than was predicted just three months ago.
These figures can be attributed to the state of the second and third quarters. "The desire for travel is stronger than the macroeconomic circumstances," they claim from the employers' organization. They affirm that there is a strong impounded demand as a result the pandemic which favors the Canary Islands in its first half of the year and all of Spain since Easter.
They also denied the negative omens that some voices are pointing out about an inflation-driven total stagnation in trips for the fourth quarter. Exceltur still predicts a slowdown in growth for the second half of the year. After a 1.1% increase in the second quarter, and 2% in third quarter, the fourth quarter saw a 3.2% decrease. Zoreda stated that "the expectations are not poor today" but it was true that summer's rise will have to coexist alongside a more complex autumn.
The employers have not seen a rise in tourist prices beyond the general inflation rate (10.2% June according to INE data). This is true for all branches of the sector. Exceltur says that businessmen will need to cut their profit margins because of the rise in energy costs and the raw materials they use, but they do not transfer their entire cost to the customer.
This, along with the high levels indebtedness of many companies "after the sector lost 174,000 millions due to the pandemic", means most are using income to repay loans that are about to expire.
Employers also shared positive news about employment. It reached pre-pandemic levels in June, 0.6% higher than the same month in 2019, with just 10,000 employees in ERTE. They also reduced from 92% to 46%, the number of temporary contract signed after approval of the labor reform. This was something they considered "very positively".
Yes, Zoreda was right to warn about the chaos that will be occurring this summer at Spanish airports where there is more non-EU tourists like the British. He emphasized the airports in Malaga, Palma and Tenerife as well as Las Palmas, Madrid, and said that it was "urgent" for border controls to be resolved.