Duty free sales boom at Malaga airport

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DUTY FREE: Contributes heavily to the local economy.

AIR passengers spend more money on duty free products at Malaga Airport than any other in Spain.

The hub’s 15,000 square metre shopping centre is booming, with over 16.6 million passengers passing through the airport last year.

Despite Malaga being the fourth largest airport in Spain, it is thought travellers spend the most money here because the shopping area was expanded after receiving a €300 million boost.

Analysts also believe the high proportion of local products available has contributed to the airport’s success, with tourists buying last-minute traditional gifts for friends and family before flying home.

The space houses 25 shops, seven of which are duty free, plus 7,000 square metres of cafes and restaurants.

The most popular item is vodka, followed by gin, while 60,000 bottles of local wine also leave the shelves each year.

In addition, two million hot drinks, 1.5 million sandwiches and one million toblerones, a beloved classic for the traveller, were sold in 2016.

The Russians are king when it comes to spending the most. According to Fernandez Bosch, Commercial Services Director of Aena, Malaga’s operator, “a third of the passengers are British, and they like to buy in these shops.

“They spend more at the airport than the Germans, while the proportion of Scandinavians and French is also notable.

“And Russians stand out because they spend a lot.”

As well as putting Malaga firmly on Spain’s tourism map, the duty free snowball also contributes heavily to the local economy, employing 1,000 of the airport’s 6,000 members of staff.

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