Tourists at Palma Airport.

Tourists at Palma Airport.

26-09-2021M. À. Cañellas

After a lukewarm 2021 summer season, efforts are now switching to next year in the hope of scraping back some of the losses incurred because of the Covid pandemic.

Easter was a bit of a wash out this year because hardly any hotels were open and the lack of tourists forced most to shut down again in August.

Data from the Institut Balear d’Estadística, or Ibestat shows that hotel occupancy was better than 2020, but nowhere near the figures of 2019.

Habtur's manager, Maria Gibert, says tourist rentals did well from mid-June to late August.

“Occupancy was around 85% and more than 90% for single-family homes,” said Gibert, who emphasised that the national market was good this year and there were more French tourists than usual, but she agreed with other hoteliers that a couple of months of activity is just not enough.

90% of hotels in Mallorca were open in the summer, but most of them didn’t actually start operating until July, according to data from the Hotel Federation of Mallorca, or FEHM. In 2020, half of the hotels in Mallorca didn’t open at all and the Sector is not very optimistic about the 2021 low season.

FEHM has not published its forecasts yet, but Habtur says September occupancy was 50%-60% and is predicting a drop to 30% in October, but Gibert admits it's almost impossible to make medium-term forecasts.

"Last-minute bookings have predominated this year," she said.

The situation in the Accommodation Sector can be extrapolated to other sectors working directly or indirectly with the Tourism Sector, such as catering, transport, trade and distribution, where activity has been confined to just a few months.

Employment

Employment and unemployment figures have improved over the past 4 months, but only working in summer is not enough, so it is important to recover the extraordinary benefits for nearly 90,000 workers in the Balearics during the winter season.

The Central Government has yet to reach an agreement on ERTE with social and economic representatives.

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