Every country around the Mediterranean has just had the worst tourism year on record and the battle for every tourist this year is heating up. With national GDPs relying heavily on the tourism industry it is little wonder that tourism boards are throwing everything at improving the market. Spain, France, Italy, Turkey and Greece have all announced so kind of incentive for guests, and now the island of Malta has joined in the promo game in a rather interesting way.
Malta plans to offer every foreign tourist 200 Euros in cash this summer, providing the tourist spends at least three nights on the island. The intention of the state of Malta is to revive the tourism industry and to be one step ahead of rival tourist countries, it is certainly a novel idea.
Maltese Tourism Minister, Clayton Bartolo, unveiled the plan on Friday. He said most of the restrictions imposed due to Covid-19 are expected to be lifted by June 1.
Bartolo stressed that tourists who book accommodation in five-star hotels will be awarded 100 Euros by the State Administration of Tourism, and that they will receive another 100 Euros from the hotel management. And those opting for a four-star hotel will get 150 Euros in total, whilst those staying in a three-star hotel will be 100 Euros. “The scheme is aimed at putting Malta’s hotels in a very competitive position as international tourism restarts,” Bartolo said.
Data from the World Travel and Tourism Council show that tourism directly or indirectly accounts for more than 27 percent of Malta’s economy. Around a third of tourists who visit Malta every year come from the UK.
In 2019, Malta was visited by more than 2.7 million foreign tourists. That number has dropped by more than 80 percent since the virus was discovered in March last year.