SANTA CRUZ DE TENERIFE, Oct 1 (EUROPA PRESS) –
The Canary Islands will have 7.8 million air seats scheduled by the airlines for this winter season, which runs from November to March, which means 650,000 more seats than in the precovid winter and a recovery of the regular air capacity of 109% .
This was announced in a parliamentary committee by the Minister of Tourism of the Government of the Canary Islands, Yaiza Castilla, who stated that “at last we can say that the bulk of our connectivity will have recovered and the Islands will be connected to 140 destinations as of November compared to the 153 before the pandemic. “
Yaiza Castilla explained that, although regular connections with the Nordic countries have been lost, more connections have been gained with southern Europe, especially with Italy and France, and also with Latvia and Slovakia, which helps diversify source markets.
In addition, he reported that connections have been opened to more islands such as Lanzarote, Fuerteventura and La Palma, which, for the first time in history, has Ryanair programming with five flights a week to Madrid and three flights a week to Barcelona. The United Kingdom is once again the market with the most scheduled seats, with 2.2 million seats planned, 6% more than in winter 2019/2020.
Castilla indicated that, contrary to what has happened this summer season, the recent announcement by the British Transport Minister to make travel regulations more flexible “will help a lot and, with all certainty, will give a strong boost to the demand for international travel. of the British, who in August, even with the Canary Islands in amber, still fell 67% compared to the same month of 2019, and in the whole of the year the fall is even greater, reaching 93% “.
As for the German market, the counselor advanced that the prospects are also equally positive, based on the regular air schedule that amounts to 1.4 million seats. He also acknowledged that the Nordic market “seems somewhat more withdrawn in regular capacity as a result of Norwegian’s slowdown, although if there is demand, there will surely be a charter operation.”
As for the rest of the markets, he reported that the ones that grew the most in absolute terms are the Netherlands, with more than double the number of seats scheduled than in the precovid winter, as well as Italy, (also double) or France, which in this case has 41% more places are made available to demand.
“These data are doubly positive in that it allows us greater diversification by country, given the desired less dependence on very few markets, such as the United Kingdom, with a third of our demand and with future uncertainties derived from Brexit, of which there are to be very aware, “he said.
RECOVER 100% CONNECTIVITY.
Despite these positive data, Castilla indicated that the Ministry continues to work “to recover 100% of connectivity and bet, at the same time, on destinations with a greater potential for quantitative growth, or others with higher spending at destination and stay, like for example the Icelanders “.
The counselor referred to the work that, on a continuous basis, is carried out by the Ministry with the airlines “of joint work, of information exchange, of finding ways of collaboration, such as co-marketing agreements, opportunities for new routes, etc”
For this reason, he affirmed that from Canary Islands Tourism “it continues to encourage air connectivity with a system of aid that compensates for the disadvantage of the Islands in attracting air traffic and, that helps to increase connectivity, to make the arrival of tourists possible. “.
In this sense, it was announced that in 2021 a total of 2,650,000 euros are allocated to these grants, which are added to the almost million euros of the call that took place in November of last year.
“We already issued a call this year for flights operated between April and May for 500,000 euros and we hope to publish the new subsidies in the BOC before October 15, for a combined amount of 2,150,000 euros, for seats operated from July to December this year, “he said.
These aids are intended for national, community or third-country airlines that carry out regular operations to the Canary Islands from any other part of the non-island territory, that is, national or international flights.
However, they will have a variation since “they are aid that is made by places that are operated, and not by routes, as it was before, because the objective is to attract more passengers,” concluded the minister.
Finally, he reiterated that his Department is continuously working on new promotional campaigns to activate and modulate the demand in the different markets according to their situation.