The Costa del Sol plans to introduce 'free coronavirus insurance' for holidaymakers

In a bid to boost tourism and attract visitors back to the Costa del Sol, the Andalusian government wants to offer holidaymakers a type of COVID insurance that covers things like medical expenses.

Photo by Alessio Rinella on Unsplash
Photo by Alessio Rinella on Unsplash
6 October 2020, Emma Donaldson

After one of the worst years for Spain's tourism industry, the Costa del Sol has announced that it is set to offer “free coronavirus insurance” in a bid to boost tourism in the area. The Andalusian government wants to offer tourists who visit the area “peace of mind” while being able to enjoy their stay in the south of Spain.

Andalusia is not the first Spanish region to make this move, as this is a similar scheme to one which was introduced earlier this year in the Canary Islands. The insurance is set to be introduced in the Costa del Sol in January 2021, is 100% free and according to the authorities, will cover medical expenses, as well as hotel and hospital costs if holidaymakers contract COVID-19 during their stay.

This coronvirus insurance comes as part of a selection of new initiatives announced in Andalusia to boost tourism after the disastrous summer season. Also announced was a discount voucher offering a 25 percent reduction on trips exclusively for domestic tourists (offered to all Andalusian residents travelling within the region between October 2020 and May 2021), while the region's Community Tourism Councillor Juan Marín clarified that the tourist insurance will also cover international travellers.

However, will these measures prove to be too little too late? Much damage has already been done when consulting the figures, seeing that 204,926 international visitors visited Spain in June, a drop of 97.7 percent compared to the same month in 2019. According to data released by the expat news agency The Local, tourist spending in the first half of the year in Spain also decreased by 70.6 percent, the sector losing 27.3 million visitors and 28.4 billion euros in revenue during the height of the pandemic in the first half of the year.

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