GERMAN tour operators are selling Spain’s holiday island Mallorca as a safe destination.
That was the message to more than 100 German travel agents at an event staged at a Playa de Palma hotel on Sunday, which was organised by the Mallorca-based company Iberostar and attended by Balearic government regional Health minister Patricia Gomez.
Condor airline CEO Ralf Teckentrup said his company had been preparing to relaunch services to the Balearic Island for weeks.
However the Condor boss also warned that this summer would not be a normal year. He explained there would not be the nine daily connections from some German airports to Son Sant Joan airport as in previous years, and while in a typical August there would be more than 2,000 operations a year for Mallorca, this year it would most probably be around half that number.
Teckentrup’s somewhat gloomy prediction is that it will be at least three years before the tourism sector fully recovers from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
DRV German Tourist Company Association president Norbert Fiebig echoed his views. He said would take two years for tourist numbers to get back up to 2019 levels, linking recovery to the availability of a vaccine, as well as pointing out the financial impact of the health crisis on household incomes.
Another point which came up at the event was whether airlines and hotels should offer discounts to attract custom.
Iberstar global director Finn Ackermann said his company policy was not to offer bargains, but quality, and to ensure hotel guests feel safe.
Lufthansa City Centre chief executive Markus Orth underlined the importance of events such as Sunday’s gathering so that travel agents start explaining to customers that they can travel. He said that because Mallorca and Iberstar have “done their homework,” Mallorca is a top holidaymaker choice.
Iberostar President Miguel Fluxa meanwhile reassured the German travel sector representatives that hotel companies are making a “huge effort so that everyone who books the island for their holidays, can do so safely.”