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Algarve tourism property targets UK in 2011

20th December 2010: Algarve Property News

In a move that has this week surprised observers, tourism officials in the Algarve have revealed their focus on emerging markets will be placed on the back-burner in 2011 as the region looks to consolidate its relationship with the United Kingdom - traditionally its biggest supplier of tourists and tourism-related revenue.

Despite 2010 on its way to becoming the best year on record in terms of profits generated in the Algarve through tourism, officials have opted to reinforce the status the region enjoys as one of British tourists’ preferred destinations.

The move was announced this week in Faro where officials unveiled the results of this past year’s ‘Allgarve’ regional entertainment and culture programme and its plans for 2011.

Contrasting the cutbacks suffered by most Government financed projects, Allgarve will maintain its budget for next year. “Our continued support of this programme is not only for the good of tourism in the Algarve, but for tourism in Portugal as a whole”, State Secretary for Tourism Bernardo Trindade told journalists at a Faro press conference this week.

The State Secretary was accompanied by the President of the Algarve Tourist Board (ERTA), Nuno Aires and the coordinator of the Allgarve programme, Augusto Miranda.

In 2011, a new strategy is being put in place and will be known as ‘Allgarve Nations’. This concept is aimed at boosting relationships with major markets, with Britain selected as the priority for 2011.

“The UK will be the major focus next year”, explained Augusto Miranda, adding that contacts have been made with London with a view to bring Phantom of the Opera to the Algarve as just one area of the increased cooperation sought with Britain in 2011.

Allgarve 2010 reported an increase of 55% in tourists in relation to the previous year, which can be explained by increased expenditure on promotion coupled with the fact that the programme this year included 95 events, spanning 11 months.

On the sidelines of the Allgarve 2010 closing ceremony, State Secretary Trindade reinforced his statement made a week earlier that 2010 had been “very positive” and that the expectation for 2011 was that the German and British markets would recover.

Mr. Trindade also expressed the belief that the crisis could have positive effects for the Algarve as many Portuguese tourists will decide against spending their holidays abroad, instead opting for a cheaper vacation in the south of the country. However, positive news was already emerging from Britain this week, as bookings for holidays to escape the UK’s big freeze were found to be up 65% year-on-year, according to, the online travel company, with traffic to the website up by 60% year-on-year since the snow first fell.

Matt Hall, Product Director at explained in a statement that “the cold weather has driven more customers to search for winter sun holidays with the Canaries and the Algarve offering the best value for money. Some holidaymakers are still looking to get away this Christmas and New Year in spite of the increased flight prices. Bookings for next summer are also helping customers to cope with the cold”, he said.

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