Published On: Fri, May 10th, 2024
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Tourists warned prices rising in Barcelona as it targets richer visitors | World | News

Tourists looking for a cheap stay in one of Europe’s most beautiful cities may soon be left bitterly disappointed and out of pocket.

Spain has its fair share of attractions for foreign visitors – be that idyllic beach resorts or vibrant cities with their unique cultures.

The country is a magnet for tourists, and in particular for Brits travelling to the continent.

Last year some 17 million British travellers spent their holidays in Spain and accounted for the largest single contingent of foreign visitors to the country overall.

One of the most popular destinations is the iconic city of Barcelona with its famous Sagrada Familia cathedral.

However demand for accommodation is beginning to outstrip supply, as tourist numbers this year look set to break previous records set in 2019.

Data provided by local authorities show that visitor numbers in the first quarter of this year are up by 9.3 percent on last year and 2.1 percent on 2019.

The greater demand for rooms is starting to drive up prices for accommodation, much to the delight of hotel and property rental owners.

Norma Galofré, the operations director of Yurbban Hotels, told the ARA media website that they were now attracting a “higher quality” of client who is prepared to splash the cash.

Describing the season to date as “very good”, he added: “The customer who comes now is a better tourist.

“They are willing to pay 400 euros for a double room in a four-star hotel.”

With accommodation prices soaring, Barcelona may soon be off limits to those on a budget and for whom money is still a bit too tight to mention.

Even a double room in a three-star hotel in the city centre in July is going for €200 per night, according to

Prices for rental apartments are also likely to start rising, as demand increases.

Enrique Alcántara, the president of the Barcelona Tourist Apartments Association (Apartur), said: “There is more competition for available beds in Barcelona, and this means that the price can increase.”

While businesses rejoice at the tourism boom, local communities continue to suffer from the negative consequences of ever-growing visitor numbers.

In recent weeks, angry residents in the Canaries took to the streets in their tens of thousands to protest against mass tourism.

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