Expectations for Easter are encouraging, with almost all hotels open.
Tourism continues to recover from the impact caused by the pandemic and expectations for Easter are positive, from hotels to local accommodation.
According to a report by ECO, the sector believes that Easter can be the “kickstart” of the recovery in tourism, at a time when the figures are already very close to the results of 2019.
Travel agencies are already feeling the positive pace of demand, but the sector is also feeling the effects of the Russian invasion of Ukraine and, for this very reason, the hospitality industry is admitting 10% price increases to compensate rising energy costs.
In April, the number of tickets issued for flights to Portugal soared 500% compared to April 2021, said Luís Araújo, president of Turismo de Portugal. However, it is important to note that this number does not include budget airlines or tickets booked directly with the airlines. Even so, the official is confident for Easter, noting that, “in terms of air connectivity”, the country is “very close to the figures of 2019”, the year in which records were broken in the tourism sector, with 27 million tourists. .
The hotel industry had “good” expectations for Easter and, for now, they remain so. “We hope that Easter can be the kick-off for the recovery,” says Cristina Siza Vieira, CEO of the Associação da Hotelaria de Portugal (AHP), stressing that “there was already very high demand”.
After a “very bad” month of January and February, the manager says that the sector “was on hold until Easter” and that, for the moment, she estimates that “there will be many more hotels open”, although around 20% are expected to continue with closed doors. The Vila Galé group, for example, will operate all 27 hotels in the country, administrator Gonçalo Rebelo de Almeida told ECO.
National and international application
The head of the country’s second-largest hotel chain says expectations for Easter are “positive”, “with reservations from domestic and foreign customers”, which forecasts occupancy rates above 80%. On the AHP side, projections point to a weight of 60% of international tourists, even if the demand for Portuguese for the hotel sector is also considerable.
The positive expectations have spread to local accommodation. “We finally managed to have some expectation of recovery,” says ECO Eduardo Miranda, president of the Local Accommodation Association of Portugal (ALEP). “March was already more optimistic and Easter is precisely what marks expectations for the start of the recovery,” the official adds, noting that Easter “is a milestone” for the sector.