Madeira hotel occupancy forecast to be above 85% in April

  • Lusa
  • 22 March 2022

The regional secretary for Tourism and Culture announced that the hotel occupancy rate in Madeira in April, including Easter, should be above 85%.

The hotel occupancy rate in Madeira in April, including Easter, should be above 85%, the regional government said on Tuesday, adding that the war in Ukraine has not led to cancellations, although there is a “slowdown in reservations”.

“Regarding the military conflict, we are not experiencing cancellations,” the regional secretary for Tourism and Culture, Eduardo Jesus, told Lusa news agency. And clarified: “We feel a slowdown in reservations, but they are always growing, which does not harm the sector’s performance”.

The minister stressed that several hotel units are already “completely sold out” for the Easter period and indicated that the forecasts point to an average occupancy rate of over 85%.

“The three main countries which will operate to Madeira in April 2022 are Portugal, with more than 103,000 seats, the United Kingdom with 43,000 seats and Germany with 30,000 seats,” he said, noting that the figures mirror the “consolidation of the recovery” of the sector, which began in the second half of 2021, after the decline recorded due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to data from the Secretariat of Tourism and Culture, 85 routes will operate to Madeira International Airport in April, involving 33 companies, 1,177 flights (28% more than in 2019) and 218,300 seats on aircraft (39% more), connecting to 46 airports in 21 countries (two more than in 2019).

“Easter is, without a doubt, a time when Madeira will have a fairly large demand,” said Eduardo Jesus, reinforcing: “The prospects we have are encouraging, prospects that lead us to believe in the consolidation of recovery.”

The governor recognizes that the fact that Madeira is geographically distant from the military conflict between Russia and Ukraine contributes to its affirmation as a “safe destination” but adds that the authorities are not excited about taking advantage of this circumstance.

“Madeira is a safe destination in its own right,” he said.

The military offensive launched by Russia in Ukraine on February 24 prompted the immediate suspension of direct flights between Madeira and the capitals of those countries – Moscow and Kiev – which were supposed to bring around 14,000 tourists to the region by October, but the Eastern European market still is a focus.

“These are countries that interest us a lot,” said Eduardo Jesus, adding that in 2021 about 8% of tourism came from Baltic and Eastern European countries.

The military conflict led to a slowdown in bookings also from those markets, but no cancellations have yet been recorded.

On the other hand, industry indicators state that tourists who used to seek Central and Eastern European countries are now seeking destinations in Western Europe.

“It means that there is a view that the Iberian Peninsula and its islands could benefit from this tourist flow, seeking more distance from the conflict,” said Eduardo Jesus.