ALMUÑECAR Municipal Tourism Board plans to attract Russian tourists by providing them with transport from Malaga Airport to local hotels.
The tourism board will collaborate with tour operator Natalie Tours, and will finance 50 per cent of the transfer to hotels in Almuñecar and La Herradura according to the local mayor, Trinidad Herrera, who is also the president of the Tourism Board.
The aim is to attract new markets to the area, she said, and “Russian tourists have high spending power which is important for the local economy”. The agreement will be signed during the International Tourism Fair in Madrid next January and will not only benefit hotels but also shops and restaurants in the town.
A meeting has already been held with the tour operator and representatives from local three and four star hotels. The tourists are expected to arrive between June and October 2012.
The President of the Costa Tropical Hoteliers Association, Jose Andres Fernandez, said that the project was an “interesting” one, because it “opens a door which was closed until now thanks to an important tour operator”.
“Bringing tourists with high spending power to the area is something very positive for Almuñecar in general”, he said “because we will be taken into account in the Russian market”. Natalie Tours expects between three and five weekly flights to Malaga Airport, of which at least one or two will be for tourists planning to visit the Costa Tropical.
Around 180,000 Russian tourists visited Spain last year using the tour operator, 20,000 to the Costa del Sol.
By Jennifer Leighfield