albufeira.jpg

Fears over “Zika virus and terrorism” look set to fill Algarve hotels

Algarve hotels are expected to fill up this summer as tourists – most of them Brits – are fleeing other destinations where the threat of “Zika virus and terrorism” is high.

Making Diário de Notícias’ front page today (February 26), the report pinpoints how Algarve hotel bookings for this summer have already increased 35% compared to 2015.

Interest is so high “some hotels are running out of rooms,” tourism boss Desidério Silva told DN.

Low cost airline Ryanair has also weighed in, encouraging people to book their holidays to the Algarve “as soon as possible”.

As Algarve’s hotelier association (AHETA) president Elidérico Viegas explains, tourists are choosing the Algarve over places where safety is becoming more questionable, including “Turkey, Tunisia, Egypt” and other North African and Mediterranean countries.

DN adds that a recent survey by TravelZoo found that British tourists consider “safety” to be the “most important factor” when choosing where to spend their holidays.

Viegas stresses also that the Algarve is “promoting itself better”, especially as more than just a “sun and beach” destination.

No matter what is causing the booking frenzy, hotels are rubbing their hands in delight.

Revenue is expected to increase 6%, which Viegas says may allow some to “raise prices”.

DN reports that Vilamoura’s Tivola Marina Hotel is expecting 15-20% more guests between April and October, while the Pestana Group expects to make 10% more money in 2016.

And as Easter approaches, the Algarve’s hotels are expecting 5% more guests for the than last year.

michael.bruxo@algarveresident.com