Canary Islands News Roundup May 2017

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75% Discount for Residents?

Tenerife South Airport
Tenerife South Airport

The Canary Islands Government has reached an agreement with the Partido Popular (currently governing Spain in minority), to increase the subvention on inter-island flights and ferries from 50% to 75% for Canary Island Residents. If the proposal is ratified, the Government have said they will keep a close eye on the Airlines to make sure that they don’t increase prices, and that the subsidies are passed on to the consumer.

Sex on the Beach

A scandal erupted in Gran Canaria when a video of a gay couple having sex on a very crowded Playa del Ingles during Maspalomas Gay Pride went viral. The local council described the event as “an isolated incident” and stated that those responsible for the video should have alerted the Police rather than record a video and share it on the internet.

Fraudulent Food Poisoning Claims

Canary Islands Hotels have seen a dramatic rise in fraudulent food poisoning claims by British Tourists, with claims worth over €12,000,000 in the last year alone. Law firms in the UK have encouraged British Tourists to make the claims, which need little more than a receipt from a Spanish pharmacy to proceed. Since the claim is made against the tour operator, the Hotel has little recourse, as the cost of the settlement is deducted by the tour operator. While some UK tabloids claimed that Spanish All-inclusive Hotels were set to ban British Tourists, Spanish Hoteliers have instead announced the they will be taking legal action against the fraudulent claimants.

Housing Crisis

The growing inaccessibility to housing has been under the spotlight this month. A huge increase in properties being rented out to tourists via Airbnb (mostly illegally) has led to a shortage in long-term rentals in areas such as Lanzarote, Corralejo in Fuerteventura and Las Canteras in Las Palmas. Long-term rental prices have increased by more than 10% in the last year, putting enormous pressure on local workers who have suffered stagnant wages for years. The number of new mortgages fell by a staggering 42% in March 2017 in the Canary Islands, when the rate of new mortgages has increased everywhere else in Spain (mostly substantially).

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