12 Jul, 2020 @ 12:00
1 min read

Are tourists ‘too little, too late’ for hospitality industry in Spain’s Mallorca?

Terenia Cafe Owner

OK so Spain has navigated Storm Corona pretty well, but what will the ravaged business landscape look like afterwards? 

We’ve probably all heard the same expressions, it’s unprecedented times and being furloughed, far too many times now! And what was wrong with using ‘temporarily redundant’ anyway, which we didn’t have to look up in the dictionary to understand what this unknown ‘furlough’ or ‘ERTE’ had inflicted on us.

But what really grinds my gears is when people say we’re all in the same boat. No, we’re really not! Some of us are bobbing along on a luxury liner just waiting to catch a glimpse of total freedom again, while others are clinging on to the life raft for their lives!

Terenia Airport Arrivals
ARRIVALS: Tourists coming out of Aeropuerto de Palma de Mallorca

Many business owners will be bailing out of their failing businesses, after clinging on to said life raft for as long as possible, and while it’s been so positive to see the bars, beaches and restaurants alive with people again, is it a case of too little, too late?

Mallorca finally welcomed the first UK tourists on July 1 and their arrival couldn’t have come sooner, as most hospitality business owners desperately need to start filling their premises if they’re to survive.

Despite there still being a lot of uncertainty and fear around travel, Spain, along with many European countries desperately needs tourists to help them get back on their feet. And while I appreciate the need to ensure that nasty little virus doesn’t creep back up on us, we do need to get moving literally, otherwise the long-term damage will be even more detrimental for many years to come. 

Terenia Cafe Owner
IN HOPE: Cafe owner in Mallorca awaits return of tourism

Now that I’m free to roam the island again I spoke with several restaurant and cafe owners and they explained that the main problem was that no one seems to know how many people will travel? Some restaurants opened in anticipation of tourists arriving, but found there were few customers, so now only open at the weekend.  

What would help them is if the summer season was extended. With hotels normally closing in October it doesn’t give them long to recoup their losses. And since air bridges were announced, Palma airport has seen a steep increase in travellers from all over Europe, in particular Germany, Holland, Poland and the UK.

But we need more tourists, and fast, to help prevent more people having to abandon their businesses. Another suggestion might be to extend the season to allow the travel and tourism industry a bit more time to salvage what is left of 2020. Just a thought!  

Terenia Taras

Terenia Taras has been a regular Olive Press columnist since April 2020 after moving to Mallorca in the same year. Having spent over 20 years working as a journalist for the UK national press, including as an investigative journalist for the infamous News of the World newspaper. When she's not venting in the Olive Press, Terenia loves to travel, read and interior design. Got a story? Email [email protected]

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