“In terms of reservations already made, but also the expectation of last-minute reservations, the outlook is very good", said André Gomes, who believes that, by the end of the year, the Algarve will reach 20 million overnight stays.
Although more than three weeks away, and without rigorous data on reservations, the director addressed, in statements to Lusa, the “very positive” expectations for the Algarve's New Year's Eve in light of the feedback collected from associations representing the sector. and some hoteliers.
“Some agents said they worked very well this year-end period. Last week, I was with one or two hoteliers and one of them, for example, told me that it was completely full for the end of the year”, pointed out the president of Turismo do Algarve.
This expectation, he added, also exists due to the good footfall in the national market that the Algarve hotel sector has already registered on the December 1st holiday, the first of four long weekends throughout the month.
“It started at the beginning of the month and until the end of the month, we have, unless I'm mistaken, four long weekends, due to holidays and parties. And this, in fact, is that opportunity that we have often mentioned that makes national tourists come to the Algarve”, highlighted André Gomes.
Demand from the national market is “stronger and more pressing” during the festive period, although very subject to last-minute bookings, taking into account the climate and motivations for visiting provided by hotels and local authorities, he considered.
The person in charge highlighted Portimão and Albufeira among the main “motivations for visiting, with Christmas villages, entertainment for children and a countless number of initiatives”.
Other municipalities present a traditional offer related to the end of the year and Christmas, such as the nativity scene in Vila Real de Santo António, and a salt nativity scene, in Castro Marim, as an example.
A concert by Orquestra do Algarve, with maestro Martim Sousa Tavares, is also planned in the arrivals area of Gago Coutinho Airport, in Faro, on December 21st, with free entry.
In addition to the usual foreign issuing markets, such as the British and Irish, André Gomes highlighted that the Algarve is registering “very large growth” in the North American, Italian and French markets, which should continue to continue during the festive season.
Given these data, the person responsible believes that hotel occupancy in the Algarve on New Year's Eve will rise compared to last year, following the “level of growth” seen between January and October 2023.
During that period, the Algarve registered more guests (7.2% more), more overnight stays (6.1% more) and more overall income (11%) than in the same period of 2022.
“We are close to reaching the threshold of 20 million overnight stays and I believe that, by the end of the year, we will reach that number, making this the best year ever in terms of tourism in the region”, concluded the president of the RTA.