By Eloise Horsfield
THREE campsites on the Costa Tropical are helping recession-hit families by accepting old peseta notes until the end of August.
Up to 10 families have already used the currency to pay for camping trips since the offer was announced a fortnight ago.
And what’s more, the offer doubles the face value of the peseta.
A 5,000 banknote, worth €30 if exchanged at the bank, is worth €60 when used to pay for campsite accommodation.
“The crisis is affecting us all,” said Carmen Lopez from Camping Playa de Poniente in Motril.
“We need to find ways to help people escape from their economic situation for a few days and breathe fresh air, with no worries on their minds.”
The idea, adopted by all three campsites on the Costa Tropical, came about following reports from the Banco de Espana that there were €1.7 billion euros tucked away in Spaniards’ drawers.
“I guess lots of people have old notes hidden in books, which they often keep to remember the peseta by,” said Antonio Martinez, director of Camping Castillo de Banos.
Martinez said five families, comprising 15 individuals, had already paid in pesetas at his campsite since the launch of the offer.
“It has meant many campers have been able to extend their stays to four or five days when they had originally planned to stay just three,” he said.
The third campsite to accept pesetas is Camping Don Cactus in Carchuna, where two families comprising seven individuals have already paid for their trip in pesetas.
The peseta was replaced by the euro in January 2002, becoming illegal tender in March of that year.
Notes and coins can still be exchanged at any branch of the Bank of Spain.