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Tourists are beginning to fill the beaches of the Costa del Sol. Salvador Salas
Costa del Sol on track to beat the all-time record of three million overnight stays in June

Costa del Sol on track to beat the all-time record of three million overnight stays in June

Tourism experts say that based on the number of advance bookings, Malaga province is on its way to beating the historic 2019 pre-pandemic figure

Pilar Martínez

Malaga

Monday, 5 June 2023, 16:12

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The Costa del Sol and Malaga province are preparing for more than three million overnight visitors in June, surpassing pre-pandemic figures.

This year's strong tourism numbers started with an historic Easter week, followed by a record-breaking month of April and then a sold-out 1 May long public holiday weekend, and now tourism experts are convinced the numbers in June will exceed the 3,045,546 overnight stays recorded in the same month in 2019.

Various employers' associations have agreed with experts from the Costa del Sol tourism sector that despite a 10-20% increase in prices, there will be more visitors flocking to the region this month than the record-breaking June of 2019.

The association of hoteliers of the Costa del Sol (Aehcos) expects 85% of beds to be filled, some2% more than in 2019. Bookings for this month are also 4% more than bookings recorded in the same month of 2022, it added.

Most popular destinations

"The forecasts for the summer season are optimistic, but the profitability of the establishments and the average gross revenue per guest staying must be carefully observed and monitored, which will determine the evolution of the sector," the executive committee of Aehcos pointed out. The most popular destinations are Torremolinos, Mijas, Benalmádena, Fuengirola and Nerja.

Owners of holiday rentals are also reporting a steady stream of bookings, although the Andalusan tourist housing association (AVVA-Pro) does not yet have specific data on the level of occupancy.

Campsites

The province's campsites, which last year exceeded their pre-pandemic figures by 5%, have already hung up signs to say they're full, for the second fortnight in a row.

The president of businessmen in the sector, Emilio Domingo, said: "for this season we are making the same forecast of being 90% full this June and for the second fortnight there is no more accommodation available".

Hospitality sector

The rise in bookings can be attributed to both the strength of international tourism, as well as interest from the Spanish to explore their own country.

The president of the province's association of travel agencies, Sergio García said: "it will be the summer of the absolute return to normality, in which all restrictions have been eliminated and all markets are responding intensely. The people of Malaga are travelling again and the USA and South America, along with Asia, are regaining their momentum".

The hospitality sector is also expecting the tourism boom to result in a record number of jobs and a rise in sales. Mahos pointed out that they are expecting a record number of people to be hired this June with 10% more jobs, and they also expect an increase in turnover, although they said that the profitability of the businesses is still suffering from the impact of the pandemic.

The chiringuito beach bars are already noticing a boost in international tourists, particularly the Dutch. Manuel Villafaina, president of the association of beach businessmen of the Costa del Sol and Andalucía, said: "we are going to have a better summer than 2019, for sure. The best lesson that the pandemic has left us is that we have to live day by day and enjoy every moment. After Covid, people are clear that the most important thing is to make the most of every moment. And that is noticeable".

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