BENIDORM tourism chiefs say less than 15 hotels could remain open in the famous Costa Blanca resort by the end of the month.
Regional hotel association Hosbec has revealed half its hotels – 65 per cent of the total that normally operate – will shut by the end of September.
Hosbec president Toni Mayor said today he predicted just 10 to 15 of Benidorm’s 140 hotels would stay open after that.
Autumn and winter are normally favourites with foreign holidaymakers including British pensioners seeking to avoid the town’s high temperatures in summer.
Mr Mayor said “In autumn and winter we rely on international tourism and elderly holidaymakers who are an at-risk group and are more afraid.
“If there’s no family tourism because the schools are starting again, there’s not much margin when it comes to keeping hotels open.
“I’m not saying some won’t stay open, but it will only be around 10 to 15.”
The suspension of a Spanish government-sponsored holiday scheme for pensioners, under which cheaper holidays are made available to resident
OAPs in Spain from October to June, will also hit Benidorm hard this year.
They normally occupy around 6,000 of the 38,000 hotel beds normally available in Benidorm in winter.
British holidaymakers returning from Spain still have to quarantine following a UK government decision to remove it from a list of 'safe' countries at the end of July.
Hosbec says it believes Benidorm’s tourist industry, which relies heavily on British tourists, will only get back on its feet when a coronavirus vaccine is available.
What is the latest travel advice for Spain?
Spain was placed onto the UK quarantine list on July 26.
Brits must self-isolate for two weeks when returning to the UK from Spain, which includes the Canary and Balearic Islands.
This is unlikely to change until new cases start to drop.
There are no entry restrictions for Brits when travelling to Spain apart from passenger locator forms on the Spain Travel Health website, and a health check on arrival.
Mr Mayor’s dire predictions about the Benidorm hotel situation comes after the town ditched its beach reservation system after just six weeks following the drop in tourists.
Tourists had to book their spot on the resort’s Levante Beach from mid-July in a pioneering move billed as part of the local council’s attempts to make Benidorm one of the safest places to holiday in Spain.
Council chiefs announced on Friday the booking system would be discontinued from yesterday.
It also said 1.8 million people had used its beaches since they reopened following a three-month state of emergency on June 15.
The other parts of Benidorm’s ‘Beach Safety Plan’, which include thousands of squares marked out on its two main beaches which tourists have to stay inside, remain in place.
Cheap holidays to Benidorm could be over as a resort boss vows to ditch boozy Brits and choose 'upmarket' tourists instead.
Servigroup hotel president José María Caballé, 79, says British tourism is not the money-maker it once was.
A Spanish tourist town has been put in lockdown by health officials after they admitted coronavirus cases were out of control.
Strict regulations have been imposed on the 6,000 residents of Beniganim, in Valencia, which is just 60 miles from the popular resort of Benidorm.
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