The mandatory quarantine measures implemented by the British Government have devastated Majorca's Vacation Rental Sector according to Miguel Cifre, President of the Balearic Association of Entrepreneurs of Tourist Holiday Homes.
”It has caused the cancellation of all reservations from the UK for August, which is the worst news that we could receive in a season that seemed like it was going to be fixed after all,” he claims.
“The average occupancy in more than 1,000 existing holiday homes in Majorca was around 50%-60%, but since Saturday, July 25, the situation has taken a spectacular turn because reservations have been progressively cancelled for the entire first half of August,” he said. “70% of reservations have been lost and we can only hope that if the quarantine is lifted the situation may change in the second week of this month, but the damage is already done”.
The total number of reservations lost in the first fortnight of August exceeds 1,500 “which means more than 9,000 Britons won’t come to the Island during the first half of August and we just hope those figures are not repeated in the second two weeks, although everything indicates that the British market will not be able to recover from one week to the next,” said Cifre.
As if that wasn't enough to contend with holiday home owners in Majorca are also worried about what’s happening in the German market.
“Uncertainty is never good, especially in tourism, reservations from Germany have started to fall and are expected to drop even more in the coming days, it’s a very complicated situation,” says Cifre.
More than 1,000 vacation home owners are now offering discounts of up to 45% this week in a bid to entice tourists from other markets.
"Prices range from 150-350 euros per day on average, but now we must apply the discounts that each owner wants to offer in a bid to recover reservations, says Cifre.
“The objective is to be able to save the peak summer month, which is where we have registered the most bookings up until now. The Covid-19 crisis has distorted all business plans, both in marketing and in turnover, so we must do everything possible to reactivate the second half of August, but until the quarantine is lifted, little or nothing can be done,” explained Cifre.
Hotel occupation is forecast to be around 60% in September, but the commercial flexibility currently in place due to the coronavirus crisis means that reservations can be cancelled the day before arrival without incurring a penalty,
"This is another thing that has a negative impact, because we are depending on factors that we have no control over, which can seriously affect the income of the companies and owners of tourist houses and villas,” said Cifre.