The Malta Independent 4 August 2020, Tuesday

UK tourist demand spiked in past two weeks, statistics on par with 2019

Karl Azzopardi Thursday, 2 July 2020, 13:16 Last update: about 2 months ago

British travel agency statistics have shown that there has been a spike in demand over the past two weeks for UK citizens who wish to come to Malta, and the numbers are pretty much on par with those of 2019, Tourism Minister Julia Farrugia Portelli told The Malta Independent. 

The British government was expected to release the official list of safe travel countries on Monday 29 June, but it was unclear whether Malta would be included.  

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This raised concerns among local tourism operators, who fear that the UK market could suffer if Malta is not placed on the so-called 'green list' of 'air bridges'; which would mean that  UK nationals will not have to quarantine for 14-days on their return. 

However, sources had told this newsroom that diplomatic discussions are underway between the Maltese and UK governments for Malta to be included in Britain's 'air bridge' list. 

Certain reports have been making the rounds today (Thursday 2 July), saying that the British government has decided to drop its air bridges plan and also remove quarantine rules for British tourists coming back to the UK from 75 countries; Malta being one of these countries.

Following the inauguration of the newly refurbished Park San Klement in Haz-Zabbar, The Malta Independent asked the Tourism Minister if she can confirm whether this is true and if Malta has officially been put under the UK's 'green-list'. 

"Until now the British government has not announced the official green-list, but, it seems that there are around 70 countries and one hopes that Malta is under this list," she said while highlighting the fact that the English market is one of the oldest markets for Malta dating back to the fifties when Malta opened its doors for tourism.  

Farrugia Portelli also revealed that the ministry received and analysed statistics of the feedback that English travel agencies have gathered and the results seem to quite pleasant. 

"The results show that people from the UK are more than willing to come to Malta, in fact, in the past two weeks there has been a spike in the demand. And if we compare this statistic with the one in 2019, they are practically the same," she said.

 


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