The UK’s decision to keep Spain on its list of countries that are unsafe for travel has put the recovery forecasts for the sector in serious trouble. The Minister of Industry, Tourism and Commerce, Reyes Maroto, defended this Friday that the Government continues to work daily for the country to change its decision.
During his participation in the Digital Tourist 2021, which these days has brought together important players in the sector in Benidorm, Maroto explained that “the United Kingdom is working with the concept of country and we are again demanding that they territorialize” the data.
As indicated, some autonomous communities such as the Valencian already provide excellent confidence indices to meet the criteria of the ‘green traffic light’ of the British Executive. In a brief meeting with journalists after her participation in the event organized by Ametic, the minister insisted that “we have a very transparent information system with which we interoperate with the British Government every day.” “We ask again that you respond to this request, because we are a safe country and we are already open to many destinations,” he insists.
The idea of the Government, as explained by President Pedro Sánchez during the presentation a few days ago of the ‘Covid passport’, was to recover 70% of international tourism by the end of the year. But the British stoppage puts these forecasts at risk, and consequently also those for growth for an economy highly focused on the sector.
Keep in mind that British tourists account for one in every five who arrive in the country. In 2019, 18 million travelers from the United Kingdom visited Spain, 21.6% of the total, which accounted for 19.4% of tourist spending by foreigners.
At the forefront of digitization
During her participation in Digital Tourist 2021, which was held for two days in Benidorm, Minister Reyes Maroto also announced the upcoming launch of a platform that will place Spain at the digital forefront of the tourism sector. The ambitious project is included within the ‘Spain Can Plan’, with an investment of 130 million euros for the platform.
Its objective will be to group public and private data of tourists, companies and destinations to make information more efficient and improve the tourist experience, with a much more personalized offer.
On the one hand, the traveler will be able to interact through the platform with the destination and its companies, maintaining fidelity with the offer before, during and, above all and most importantly, after the trip. “Loyalty is key, it is very important to remind tourists that they have to return,” explained Maroto during his speech at the event organized by Ametic.
From the point of view of the destination, the platform will offer information on cultural offerings, activities, interacting with the tourist during their stay with resources to facilitate mobility, schedules, health information and measures against the pandemic in each region, etc.
Finally, for companies, the platform accelerates their business digitization process, both commercially and in management processes, and strengthens the technical preparation of workers.
For Maroto, “it is not only the development of a technological solution, it is the commitment to an intelligent and innovative way of working in the public and private sectors.” The first phase of the project will take place over six months, a period in which pilot projects will be launched in different regions to later be extended to the rest of the country.