Lampedusa Tourism Operators Send Loud Alarm Cry
The first charters from Milan and Bologna scheduled on the island of Lampedusa (Sicily, Italy) have been cancelled, and the hotels remain closed. The economic supply chain remains at zero altitude, and Lampedusa tourism operators are sounding the alarm.
The complaint of the category: hoteliers and travel agents are entrusted to Antonio Martello, hotel entrepreneur and administrator of Sogni nel Blu, one of the main island tour operators, to address the region of Sicily and the central government with the accusation of not supporting the necessary financial aid to a border island.
Lampedusa, a splendid island, is also known for being the landing point of the boats of illegal immigrants. From here, they are sorted to other destinations.
“We need to be put in a position to be able to work; we need immediate and concrete measures of economic support and that the network of air links with the mainland be restored, without which no tourist can ever land in Lampedusa. We know that it will already be difficult to recover; the season lasts a few months with us,” complained Martello.
“We are concerned because the so-called red area of the north is the one from which most of the tourists who choose our islands come from,” explained Martello, “but while those regions are also working hard to leave, we are stuck in the general disinterest.”
In the absence of direct flights, Lampedusa tourism operators are considering whether and how to restart the charters. “We would like to be able to start again at the end of June. In order not to leave anything to chance with great sacrifice and drawing on the latest financial resources, the island’s hotel facilities are adapting to the sanitary provisions that require sanitation and redefinition of spaces based on the rules of distance,” Martello added.
The request for state intervention also finds reason in the costs that the local company must bear to bring tourists to Lampedusa in the absence of an adequate network of connections. “A charter that leaves half empty for health provisions,” explained Martello, “will force the tour operator to integrate the cost of the charter with the inevitable increase in the cost of the ticket for those who fly.”
Rates will grow by at least 60%. On balance, a return ticket could cost between 600 and 700 euros. This will have an effect to reduce the number of tourists who decide to reach the island.