The Costa del Sol plans to promote ‘health tourism’ which will encourage people to come to the area for treatment in private clinics, of which the province has plenty.
The President of the Costa del Sol Tourism Board, Elias Bendodo, already announced last year that they are working with Ministries of Health and Foreign Affairs in several countries to create a visa for this purpose. The Tourism&Health Spain group has been created for this purpose and includes several clinics in Malaga province, as well as spas, hotels, travel agencies and other companies in several sectors.
By 2017 health tourism alone could bring almost 40,000 tourists and €300 million to the area.
Some nine million people every year in Europe alone head abroad for health purposes, which Bendodo said is a great opportunity to promote the Costa del Sol as an ideal area for health, as well as beating seasonality by attracting visitors to the area all year round.
The main markets are Germany, the UK, France, Holland and Scandinavia, countries which already know the Costa del Sol. Under the name Spaincares, the ministries of Tourism and Health have joined forces at a national level to collaborate and attract health tourists.
According to the organisers, the area is up there with Madrid, Barcelona, Pamplona and the Balearic Islands as the destinations which would attract most people. Its excellent connections by rail and air contribute to this. What’s more, the arriving tourists are expected to have increased spending power.