Closer, shorter and less luxurious; this is how the summer holidays can be described for many Spaniards. This summer, holidays in Spain are more expensive than ever. After the pandemic, inflation and record petrol prices, holiday prices are skyrocketing in Spain.
“Está todo muy caro” (everything is so expensive). This is a phrase that has been uttered a lot lately when it comes to holidays in Spain. From beach holidays to a cabin in the mountains, by car or by plane, the prices have skyrocketed. After two years of pandemic, and now a summer with no restrictions in sight, people are ready for a holiday. However, according to data from the National Institute of Statistics, hotel stays are on average 45.4% more expensive than last year.
Hotel prices in Spain have been rising for years
Yet the pandemic and inflation appear to be only part of the cause. The rise in prices for a hotel room has been rising since 2013. Between January and April of that year, a hotel room cost an average of €68 per night. Although prices were a lot lower during the pandemic, they have risen to an average of €90 per night this year. †
However, the rise in prices is not unexpected, the Spanish news site Lasexta.com wrote on Thursday. It has been a difficult year for hoteliers and airlines. The maintenance of hotels and aircraft continues, but revenues were on the back burner for two years. The Spanish consumer organisation OCU says these record prices can give travellers the feeling that the tourism sector wants to recoup what it has lost for two years.
Space, peace and nature continue to attract Spaniards
Nevertheless, probably because of the considerable prices of hotels, the sector is seeing an increase in the number of bookings for cottages and campsites along the beach, but certainly also in the interior of Spain. The feeling of space, nature and not too many people around you in a hotel swimming pool or in a dining room is still very popular after the pandemic, a spokesperson for the Andalucian Camping Federation reported.
Although there are more bookings for campsites, only 3% of Spaniards go camping. According to the federation, growth is therefore still possible, especially given that in other European countries that percentage is on average 30%.
Nearly 5 million Spaniards can’t afford a holiday
Despite Spaniards looking for cheaper holidays, for many a brief moment away from home remains just a dream this summer. According to a study by the OCU, 21% of Spaniards have decided to holiday close to home or in the countryside.
Research by the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) shows that in 2021 more than 4.7 million Spaniards were living on the brink of poverty. They have an income that is on average 60% below the average income and they did not have the opportunity to go on holiday last year. How that will turn out this year, figures will have to show later this year.