Now that Andalucía has entered Phase 3 of the easing of the state of alarm restrictions, the regional government is keen to attract travellers again and has chosen internationally famous actor Antonio Banderas, who is from Malaga, as the face of its post-pandemic tourism campaign.
In a video filmed with Malaga's famous Roman theatre and Alcazaba fortress in the background, Banderas talks about his heart attack and says the coronavirus crisis has been similar and that there is a lesson to be learned from it: "Today, it is as if we were all recovering from a heart attack. Being alive doesn't just mean breathing again, it means feeling emotions again. This summer, let's go out and enjoy life to the full in Andalucía," he urges.
This is the region's first tourism campaign after the Covid-19 crisis, and it was officially presented by Juan Marín, the vice-president of the Junta de Andalucía and its minister for Tourism. He expressed his thanks to Banderas, who he said had ceded all his rights for the media campaign, and announced that a special budget has been allocated for a series of campaigns to reactivate the Andalusian economy.
The total sum is three million euros, and part of the money is being used for a new scheme to certify that hotels and other establishments in Andalucía fulfil all health and safety protocols. The vice-president said that 15,000 businesses have been informed about this so far, and 170 have already been awarded their safety certificate.
Marín announced that the Junta de Andalucía will be investing 22.5 million euros to promote Andalucía as a tourist destination from now until the end of the year,
These activities will put across the message that people are keen to travel after the coronavirus crisis, and Andalucía is keen to welcome them.
The Junta has prepared a support plan for travel agencies, because they play such an important role in connecting travellers with destinations, and now that people are permitted to move between provinces within the region, it wants to encourage them to do so. It also aims to attract visitors from other parts of Spain once the state of alarm is over, and by the end of June it should be possible to travel freely within the country. "Andalucía wants you to come," is the message.
With regard to visitors from abroad, over 600,000 euros will be spent to promote the region in Germany, Scandinavia, Belgium, France and Italy, and the Junta hopes to include the UK, which is Andalucía's biggest source market, depending on how the pandemic evolves there and what measures are adopted by the British government.
Nevertheless, there will be promotions in the UK anyway, to maintain a presence there. The machine to bring people to the region will be working flat out, so that Andalucía can start to repair the damage caused by the coronavirus.