Spectator-less F1 race to spell “two more months of winter”, say travel agencies

The Portuguese Association of Travel and Tourism Agencies (APAVT) says the government’s decision to not allow spectators at the F1 Portuguese Grand Prix, due to take place in Portimão on May 2, will spell “two more months of winter” for the tourism sector.

According to the association, the news has capped off what has been a “terrible year” for the sector.

“In light of these decisions – or apparent decisions which have been reported in the press but have not been confirmed officially – we will face two more months of winter during spring, meaning our winter has been lasting for over a year,” APAVT president Pedro Costa Ferreira told Lusa news agency.

Explained Ferreira, travel agencies were hoping to sell F1 travel packages to foreign clients, but the spectator ban has dashed all prospects of taking advantage of the major sports event.

The association is hopeful nonetheless that this “sacrifice” will finally mark the return of travel in May or June – in other words, a “return to life for all of us, which we badly need.”

michael.bruxo@algarveresident.com