I have to agree totally with Ian Morrison's letter concerning his findings on the Costa Del Sol. A recent and very enjoyable holiday was spent exploring this area and The Alpujarras. Before leaving I rang some hotels to check on availability and on two occasions heard words not very often used in these parts: Sorry we are full. Yes, there are plenty of tourists around on the Costa -- all spending money and seemingly very happy with: Clean beaches, resorts that are fully open, people that are helpful and prices that are lower. How come a bar owner can sell a beer for less than here and include a generous helping of Tapas in the price? The idea that people will pay for the so called pleasure of being on this island is totally incorrect. People don't have to come here -- the other Spanish resorts alone offer a world of choice -not forgetting the rest of Europe; all mainly within similar flying distances. The destinations on offer to Germans and Britons is vast -- far greater than that offered by Spanish Tour Operators to Spanish people or residents and the prices are lower. Yes the weather was warmer in Andalucia -- no one can do anything about that -- but this island can do something about the other things -- it all boils down to value for money and this island is over priced. On top of all that we of course have the EcoTax which just adds to the problem -- I should imagine that the other tourist areas of Spain must be rubbing their hands with glee at the way in which an area which was a leading light in tourism has shot itself in the foot!
Not to mention of course that we have also just upset another money earner for this island the American Navy -- the ordinary service man does not make decisions, he spends money!
We flew to Malaga with Air Berlin, who were excellent, offering flights at less than a third of the cost of any Spanish competitor. Needless to say they were full. Yes I know they are Charter and not Schedule -- So what? Who cares!! I'm not interested in the technicalities or politics of it. I, like the rest of the travelling public, want to get to where I am going as cheaply as possible. I have to close by saying that I can see no way tourism will climb back to its previous levels on this island until we remember that the tourist does not need us -- he can go where he likes and chooses. We need him!