Tourism recovery allows prices to rise at last
By Shelley Liddell COSTA Blanca hotel owners have been able to raise their tariffs by an average of 5% thanks to the current tourist boom in the area.
The number of Spanish holidaymakers visiting the Costa Blanca is also on the rise.
The majority of hotels froze their prices in the years following the economic slump in Spain. When they updated their prices, they launched many offers and discounts, so the price rise wasn't really applied.
Guests booking well in advance also enjoyed a better rate.
Now business is booming, many hotels have invested heavily to upgrade their installations, so they are now applying an average rise of 5% to their room rates.
Even with this small increase in price, Costa Blanca hotels are still cheaper with regard to their quality/price relationship in comparison to hotels in other parts of Spain.
According to the National Institute of Statistics, the average revenue generated per room is €64,40, which is a 4% rise in comparison to 2016, but still nowhere near hotels in Cataluña (€94.50), the Canary Islands (€87), Andalucia (€81) or the Balearic Islands (€75).
The Costa Blanca tourism market still depends heavily on British tour operators, who sign their contracts two years in advance. This explains why the average revenue per room in Benidorm is around €57.20, while in Alicante it is €47.
These tour operators are constantly putting pressure on to obtain the best rates for their clients, as nowadays more and more people prefer to organise their own low-cost flights and book directly with the hotel, rather than book a package deal with a tour operator
Some Benidorm hotels now prefer to offer discounts and additional services to clients booking directly on their webpage.
Others have taken the bold step of not working with tour operators any more. By ruling out the middleman, the hotel stands to make more money and can offer cheaper rates to the guest.
During the height of the summer season, many hotels prefer to cater to the Spanish market, as Spanish guests tend to spend more than foreign guests, but last year foreigners spent a daily average of €138, a 6.5% increase from the previous year..
During 2016, Spain registered a record-breaking 75.3 million visitors, a 9.9% increase on 2015 figures. Of these, six million stayed on the Costa Blanca, half of them in Benidorm.
Between May and the end of October, 66,000 flights and 13 million passengers will pass through Alicante-Elche airport, 17% more than in 2015. A large number of these visitors are British tourists who do not seem to be affected by Brexit and the low pound.