26 Apr, 2011 @ 10:00
1 min read

Tourists will ease economic recovery in Spain

SPAIN’S economy is to get a much needed boost this summer as up to a million extra tourists flock to the country due to the chaos in the Middle East and North Africa.

Experts predict a rise of between two and 2.5 per cent this year, as holidaymakers – mostly from Northern Europe – avoid troublespots like Tunisia, Morocco and Egypt and book holiday lettings in Spain.

Francesc Valls, a tourism expert at ESADE business school in Barcelona estimates that the rise could help to create up to 10,000 new jobs.

This would make up for around 180,000 positions lost since the economic crisis hit the country three years ago.

But he warned that the country had to become more competitive, slashing prices and improving on quality levels.

“Spain has a lot to offer … but we fall short in terms of price-to-quality and legislative control,” he said.

Tourism accounts for about 11 per cent of Spain’s gross domestic product, despite a global reduction in spending in travel.

Last year saw a rise of 1.4 per cent to 53 million visits.

Wendy Williams

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  1. PRICE TO QUALITY OR DOWN RIGHT PROFITEERING? Arrive at Malasg Airport on your Easter break and pick up your hire car and head off to your accommodation on the Costa del Sol. After a few kilometers you join a huge queue at the first toll booths on the m,ain highway. This is becuase their is insifficient staff and booths open to service demand! Then be flabbergasted at the daylight robbery price of €6,30 and this is just your first toll to Marbella. Ist called ‘seasonal pricing’ Rubbish, its called ‘haven’t a

  2. So what has been improved on the toll road? Nada. So who financed it? EU money? You welcome the tourists here first by taking European funding, and then again with these extortion prices? What a welcome that is indeed. The N340 coast road is still very dangerous to drive. Heard of any politician who is going to put the 6,30 in improving that? No. Spain is still a puta. Ah well, a substantial part. Luckily many agree with me as well but are ashamed to admit.

  3. I’m not entirely sure why any of the contributions above are so bitter but at best they are a tad miserable to say the least. Ok the Easter weather was poor, I’ll grant you that.

    The toll road has always been seasonally priced, if you don’t like it then don’t pay it and use the coastal road. In all the years it’s been open I do not recall there ever being a ‘huge’ queue at the booths. You seem to have been a very unlucky person on this occasion.

    Costa Del Concrete? You haven’t tried very hard to venture out obviously.

    Furthermore, the N340 is hardly ‘very dangerous’ to drive these days as the accident stats show. “‘Luckily’ many agree with me” – what a churlish and vindictive thing to say. You don’t read the Daily Mail perchance do you?

  4. “Costa Del Concrete? You haven’t tried very hard to venture out obviously.”

    Actually, I normally venture as far away as I possibly can. Only using AGP if I really have to. And I’m sure the Costa del Sol was once beautiful, but it isn’t now. Anyone who doesn’t think it’s overbuilt is a concrete slab short of a reinforcement bar or two.

    Thankfully the Costa de la Luz is mostly unspoilted, so that will do me for the time being…

  5. The point of the Toll Road is to ease congestion on the N340.
    There does not appear to be any acceptance of tourist industry decline or the fact that new competitors are rising fast.
    Its the same with GOLF….put prices up and up…drive golfers to Portugal…drop prices..golfers come back…put prices up!
    Its childish!! Its NBOT sane business practice! Other leaders in other countries say so too!
    Where is the Andalucian Governement strategic management?
    Euro 6,30 is a shocking price…its unrealistic and incomparable…its a DISGRACE and an INSULT with denial sam to tourists and those that use the motorway every day alike.
    But carry with the denial, after all unemployment isn’t really higher than 5% and there’s no corruption in politics!
    Either wake up and do something or watch Spain tourist industry go the same way as the housing market
    And as tourism is THE only potential saviour of Spanish economy then please take it seriously as diverting traffic to the N340 due to toll overcharging is plain daft!

  6. The AP7 goes all around the coast of Spain. All EU money. But good. Infrastructure. Toll road only around Marbella. The rest is free. Why? Then every year the prices go up. Do we get any happy ending at these rates when we leave the road. More seriously, many parts of the N340 are very dangerous. I would pay 10 if they would make some exits, like the east Marbella exit (russian roulette on ramp) a bit safer. They do not seem to care. It illustrates how stupid the Spanish still are. Even if they learn English. A Spain in the A…….

  7. I agree its not helpful labelling with insulting remarks. We should all work together to help make Spain the best valued number one choice for tourism in Europe and to do this then a simple look at the sensitivity to unnecessary tactical profiteering and pay more attention to a long term future healthy and sustainable tourist industry because denial isn’t helpful either.
    Otherwise just tax tourists to Spain 100% on their holiday costs and pass this straight to councillors at the Town Hall and see how long this lasts..crazy? YES of course but no more crazy that extortionate seasonal toll road pricing designed to tax tourists who are needed for the life blood of Spain.

  8. Paco mcsheepie,
    the Costa del Sol is all concrete and totally overbuilt.

    I decided to revisit the coast of Andalucia to see if all I had heard and seen was true about the over developement since I had been there in 68.

    The worst by far was the once beautiful little hamlet of Aguadulce – now an obscenity of concrete crap upon concrete crap stretching right up into the arroyos.

    In 2003 my partner Angela nearly cried when we approached Granada from the mountains above, she had visited in 65 – clearly you can see the old Granada that she found so beautiful and then there is the totally unplanned sprawl all built on the agricultural alluvial plain, instead of on the barren hillsides all around and now they waste money on a metro system for a small city like Granada.

    hey you are completely wrong the Auroroute from the French border right down is full of toll charges – I know I used it leaving Spain with a lorry full of house contents.

    To have seen Spain when it was run by the intelligent Arab and Jewish Semites who loved and revered Al-Andaluz/the Paradise would be something else but even centuries after the Germanic savages had conquered Spain and destroyed so much, a lot was still left that was beautiful. Not to mention restaurants that served traditional tasty food.

    All gone and lost forever through short term greed and stupidity – esta la vida.

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