New Inter-island Residents’ Subsidy
An increased travel subsidy for inter-island flights and ferries came into effect on Thursday the 29th of June. The subsidy now offers Canary Islands’ residents a whopping 75% discount on inter-island travel. Ferry and Flight Operators reported an ‘avalanche’ of bookings, with some reporting an 800% increase in bookings compared to the same day of the previous week.
€150 Exemption on Imports
Also from the 29th of June, a new law exempting imported goods with a value lower than €150 from IGIC sales tax came into effect. The law should help consumers who, up until now, had to pay IGIC (and associated customs’ clearance fees) on goods purchased online from both the EU and the rest of the world. Not all goods will be free of of import taxes though; Tobacco, Alcohol and Perfume will continue to be subject to IGIC as well as any goods subject to AIEM (a protectionist tax applied to goods that compete with local products).
Air Europa to enter the Inter-Island Flight market
Air Europa will begin flying inter-island routes in the Canary Islands from the 30th of October 2017. The first routes will connect Gran Canaria with Tenerife North, Lanzarote and Fuerteventura. The airline plans to increase the frequency of those connections and add a route to La Palma in March 2018. Finally, in October 2018, Air Europa will add direct routes connecting Tenerife with Lanzarote, Fuerteventura and El Hierro.
Tourist Numbers continue to Rise
The number of foreign visitors to the Canary Islands continues its upward trend with 5.9 million visitors in the first 5 months of the year – representing a 9.6% rise compared to the same period last year. Spain as a whole, received 28 million visitors during the same period – 11% more than in 2016.