Discussing the recent bankruptcy announcement of the tour operator giant Thomas Cook, Algarve Tourism has revealed that they are closely monitoring the situation, together with Faro Airport and industry representative associations, to find solutions to minimize the effects of this event on tourism in the region.
“Thomas Cook was a business with a long tradition in the Algarve, with whom the region had been working for many years, and the news of its bankruptcy is naturally worrying, especially with regard to the damage that may result for some of our hoteliers.” says João Fernandes, president of Algarve Tourism.
“On the other hand, and despite the longstanding relationship, this was not currently the main operator for our destination. The weight that this company had on tourism in the region today is much lower than in the past. Thomas Cook once owned hotels in the Algarve, and was currently operating in the region based on the sale of integrated accommodation and air transport packages, corresponding to around 10,000 annual passengers landed, which is 0. 2% of the total flow of visitors arriving by air, so we cannot say that it is very representative of the total. ”
In an immediate action, Algarve Tourism has stated that they are working to ensure that proper conditions for the arrival and departure of tourists in the region, especially those who have been affected by this situation, are in place.
“We are talking about a set of around 500 people, and we believe that this will not be a complicated operation, as the Algarve has several operators and airlines that guarantee direct connections to the main airports of the United Kingdom, Germany, and Holland (the main markets this operator worked with) ”, explains João Fernandes.
At the same time, Algarve Tourism made it clear that they are intensifying their efforts to cover the losses resulting from Thomas Cook’s bankruptcy. In line with what has already been done, the strategy includes, among other things, strengthening negotiations with other tour operators that may occupy the space hitherto left by the British company, and conducting joint marketing campaigns, to promote the potential of the region’s attraction and increase destination sales.
“Our expectation is that many of Thomas Cook’s current customers will soon find alternatives from competing companies and operators,” concluded Algarve Tourism’s president.