The mayor of Benidorm described the meeting held on Wednesday with the United Kingdom ambassador, Hugh Elliot, as “very interesting, but hugely disappointing,” in that the prospect of going green on the UK Traffic Light System seems very unlikely.
The meeting was also attended by HOSBEC president, Toni Mayor, and the general secretary, Nuria Montes; by the director of Visit Benidorm, Leire Bilbao, and by members of the British Consulate in Alicante, Consul Sarah Jane Morris, and Vice Consul Sarah Munsterhjaelm.
“British Tourism is essential for Benidorm”, the mayor said, while Pérez insisted that “we work together, share data and analyse the situation in all territories.” The mayor insisted that “we work with the maximum realism” and therefore, “there has to be an orderly mobility which may dictate increasing volumes during the months of July-August, August-September.”
The ambassador of the United Kingdom, Hugh Elliot, recognised the good epidemiological data obtained by Benidorm “which represents great progress”, noting that everything is very positive in the future “for tourism will seek safe sites and this work will be recognised”.
To questions from the media, he pointed out, realistically, “the low probability” that there will be any variation across mainland Spain in the British traffic light system.
Ambassador Elliot recognized “the reality is that British tourists love being here ”; But he pointed out that the country’s strategy is “to operate a global situation,” and although the effort of the destination and the desire by the British to holiday in Benidorm, it is not possible to do so at this time, however he did welcome the good news of the return of Spanish national tourism to the beaches of Benidorm.
Regarding the change of colour in the holiday traffic light, Elliot indicated that “during these months and from previous decisions we have learned to be cautious ”, but said he had confidence that “with the increase in vaccinations and the decrease in the prevalence of the virus ,soon we will have good news “since we are, he said” globally, over the worst moment of the pandemic, with our eyes on the variants and the tools to combat them.
Pérez highlighted the accumulated incidence that “for Benidorm it is just 15 cases per one hundred thousand” and that, “there are many positive factors that this destination offers”. The evolution of the pandemic, he explained “is very different in Benidorm than in the rest of Europe.”
The mayor insisted, “we have to continue working along these lines: offering a safe destination, complying with all regulations, and with responsibility so that everything that can benefit us and that mainland Spain is incorporated into the green traffic light by United Kingdom. Then, Pérez pointed out, the issue of logistics will come”.
“We will be able to receive British tourism from the first minute that is possible in the volume that Benidorm needs”, announcing “a summer closely linked to national tourism, with the hope of receiving British from mid-July” .
“The desire is there and the collaboration, too,” concluded Ambassador Elliot, reaffirming the dates set by the mayor of Benidorm regarding the return of the British “on a holiday that both parties want to be able to take.”