Spain warning: Benidorm faces economic ruin due to travel rules – 'we're in dire straits'


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Spain and its islands usually draw around 18 million UK visitors each year. However, this year has seen those numbers take a plunge due to the coronavirus pandemic and its disastrous impact on international travel. The lack of UK visitors is also partly down to Britain’s quarantine restrictions.

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Spain, the Canary and Balearic Islands were axed from the UK travel corridor list this summer which means anyone returning from those destinations faces 14 days in isolation when they arrive in the UK.

Since the Spain’s removal from the list, the country has experienced a surge in coronavirus cases which has led regions to impose harsher restrictions to halt the spread of the virus.

The country was one of the hardest-hit in Europe earlier in the year which saw the country impose a strict three-month lockdown.

According to the latest figures from European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) as of October 20, Spain is recording 343.1 cases per 100,000 people over a 14-day period.

READ MORE: Cruise news: Britons welcomed on voyages returning to Canary Islands

Spain warning: Benidorm faces economic ruin due to travel restrictions – ‘we’re in dire straits’ (Image: GETTY)

Spain holidays: Spain is recording 343.1 cases per 100,000 people over a 14-day period (Image: GETTY)

The country’s latest case numbers also suggests that they have recorded over one million cases.

This, paired with the UK’s travel restrictions, has caused tourist income to collapse in popular tourist areas such as the Costa Blanca and Valencia.

The regions have seen tourist income collapse by a whopping 70 percent during the first nine months of 2020 due to coronavirus, according to the Olive Press.

The regional government estimates that €11.4billion (£10.36billion) has been lost from the region’s economy so far this year.

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That’s €9.2billion (£8.36billion) just from the Costa Blanca and the Alicante region.

Hotel association Hosbec has also said half the European travel industry “will be bankrupt” by the spring if quarantine rules continue.

They also reportedly said that travel corridors in the region would be a “lifeline”.

They think that travel corridors and a more effective track and trace system would allow for travel regain lost ground.

Hosbec told Olive Press: “We know that tourist activity is viral to the Valencian Community economy, but it is being forced to close while shops, schools and universities remain open.”

One Benidorm resident Paula Martin contacted Euro Weekly News, imploring “friends and neighbours” to visit the town.

She told the news site: “Friends of Benidorm, we need your support now.

“Many of you have had wonderful times in Benidorm and now Benidorm needs you to help us recover.

Quarantine exemption list (Image: EXPRESS)

“As a town we are in dire straits. Our industry is tourism but without tourists our young people have no work, no hope, no aspirations, no money.”

A bar owner in Benidorm revealed on Twitter that they have been struggling due to the coronavirus pandemic.

They said: “We bobbed along in August with the Spanish holidaying here.

“Yesterday it was horrendous down the street. Just desolate.”

They added: “Benidorm is going to struggle to get out of this mess.”


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