Finally, it is reality. The Canary Islands can wave goodbye to any thoughts of the pandemic as they have as a star destination for tourists. If before the pandemic the Islands were breaking all visitor records, with 15.9 million in 2019, they have now officially returned with record figures.
Neither high inflation, which has increased accommodation prices by 24%, nor the rise in fuel prices, which has also raised flight prices, nor the war in Ukraine, has stopped tourists, who, despite everything, still want to travel.
This has meant that the archipelago has not only exceeded the arrivals figures of 2019 but also has been chosen as a favourite destination in Europe this Easter.
According to the latest data, most of the islands have exceeded 90% accommodation occupancy, with La Palma and La Gomera at 95% full due to national tourism. However, these figures are not only for hotels, as rural tourism and holiday homes are also close to being full.
Air traffic forecasts at Canarian airports this Easter point to a recovery in traffic before the pandemic. AENA has a total of 12,977 flights scheduled in and out of the islands for Easter week (Semana Santa), compared to the 12,344 registered in the same festive period of 2019.
On the busiest days, between yesterday (Holy Thursday) and next Monday, the Canary Islands airports will operate 5,900 flights, which represents an increase of 6.49% compared to 2019, the pre-pandemic year in which there were 5,540 operations.
As for accommodation, the hotel associations that Easter Week will end with an average occupancy of 80% on the islands of the province of Las Palmas, except for Fuerteventura, where a minimum of 90% is expected, while in those of Santa Cruz de Tenerife will be above 80%. An almost absolute full that takes us back to times before the pandemic.
The president of Ashotel, Jorge Marichal, said earlier this week: "We hope that 2023 will be the year of consolidation in the tourism sector." However, hoteliers do not want to ¡speak of a "full tourism recovery” yet, because there are still some markets that are "practically closed or with little movement".
British tourists continue to be the most loyal market, and even though prices have risen in everything related to the hospitality sector, the Canary Islands continues to be one of the cheapest destinations to spend your holidays.