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Areas Urbanism & territory, Tourism and Economic activities Tourism planning and Economic activities

Formentera takes show to BIT in Italy

Fira MilàToday was the first day of the BIT (for Borsa Internazionale del Turismo, or International Travel Fair) in Milan, one of Italy's most important tourism trade fairs. Hence, through Saturday, the promotions office of the Formentera Council has got one fairly simple goal: «Build loyalty among Italian travellers». As department head Carlos Bernús indicated, «Formentera shares a stand with the other islands of the Balearics and we've used our space to tout our green trails and publicise events like our very first beach volleyball tournament, to be held at Cala Saona beach in May». Bernús says the office also hopes to see more tourists coming to the island in the low season.

Germany and London

Since yesterday and through to Sunday 14 February, Formentera is also doing promotional work at Munich's international exhibition for tourism and leisure, Free. Once again, at a stand shared with our Balearic neighbours, Formentera tourism reps will be promoting the island to the German market. According to Bernús, Germany will be the site of ten different presentations this year, where Formentera will set itself apart as «a family-friendly island of fresh air and open spaces; an island where, unlike some destination spots plagued by conflict, Formentera offers its visitors the promise of safety». And finally, from today to Sunday Formentera will be attending the London Bike Show, an exhibition for cycling-addicts where our local tourism representatives will show off the different cycle paths of the island.

Good news for Formentera tourism: 757 new licences and 257 new rooms registered

RP Places TurístiquesEarlier today, the Formentera Council's office of tourism reported on the results of its most recent campaign to get property owners to register accommodation rented out to tourists. From the ratification of a municipal ordinance and establishment of registration fees in 2011 to this month's 17 January deadline, 757 new licences have been made available to local hotels and apartment complexes for add-ons to existing accommodation or brand-new vacation housing. Likewise, 253 rooms have been registered at already existing tourist accommodation. Tourism department head Alejandra Ferrer notes the number of available licences for tourist-use rooms has gone from 1,195 in 2009 to 185 today. Ferrer reminded property owners who have yet to request a permit for add-ons or brand-new rooms they can still do so. The numbers, says Ferrer, prove many Formentera tradesmen have done their homework and proceeded accordingly, motivated by a desire to make improvements at tourist accommodation or just make sure their rental accommodation has a legal standing.

Registered accommodation means more than two million euros

The registration fee for each unit of tourist-use accommodation was between €2,800 and €4,200, depending on the quality of the dwelling. Ferrer explained the Council's policy of «lower rates for higher quality accommodation» as indicative of the administration's goal to invest in high-level tourism. Owners have the option of paying fees in instalments. The Council predicts the measure will ultimately mean revenue of €2,177,000, which a special commission will be charged with investing. Ferrer said investments will likely include improvement projects in well-established tourist areas like Es Pujols, and focus on market diversification, R&D and leadership initiatives. There are a total of 11,667 units of tourist accommodation available on Formentera.

Formentera’s message at FITUR: nature lovers, look no further

fitur 2016The doors opened today at Madrid’s International Tourism Trade Fair (FITUR), where the Formentera Council was ready to show would-be Spanish tourists the door that forms the heart of the island’s patrimony. By promoting our outdoor attributes, the Council hopes to appeal to Spanish travelers, a group that over the last three years has even begun surpassing Italians in numbers at certain periods of the season. Tourism councillor Alejandra Ferrer explains: «The national market helps us fill out our numbers in the pre- and post-season. It also happens to be the closest one to us geographically and getting away to Formentera for a few days is more feasible for them».

Tomorrow is the day the people of the Balearics celebrate their region – a day known officially as el Dia de les Illes Balears. At 12 noon, CiF president Jaume Ferrer will be joined by the tourism councillor and Carlos Bernús, head of the local tourism advisory board, in giving a presentation on Formentera highlighting the island’s natural and cultural charms. At 1 p.m., Juan Ramón Cobo, chef at the Es Marès hotel, will give a culinary demonstration of a new take on the popular local salad, amanida pagesa. Some fifty media representatives specialized in fine dining and tourism are scheduled to attend both presentations.

Outdoor trails and sport

In an attempt to increase footfall at the Balearic Islands’ stand at FITUR, Formentera reps will be on hand to greet and provide visitors with information on the island’s different outdoor trails and activities. A portion of the stand is dedicated to sport, and information is available about the more than 20 sport meets and trials set to take place during the low season. Together with different cultural events, explained Councillor Ferrer, Formentera’s 2016 activities programme includes over 60 suggestions for fun.

On Saturday visitors to the stand will be treated to a sampling of the famous Pitiüsa pudding flaó. For their part, the Formentera representatives will also have a full schedule of meetings with offices of tourism, websites, magazines and niche media outlets – all with an end toward showing the best of what the island has to offer. The goal is to push promotional campaigns like Discover Formentera in May and October, both of which are devised to attract more visitors before and after summer. New this year is Formentera Astronòmica (28 and 30 October), which takes advantage of scarce light pollution to show off the beauty of Formentera’s night sky.

In coming days, Formentera tourism to make its case to countries of Northern Europe

Foto promoció de Formentera a Utrecht copiaAccording to Formentera's tourism advisory board director, Carlos Bernús, over the next week local tourism reps will highlight the island's «family-friendly and nature-loving side» to crowds at three different holiday destination fairs. The goal, he said, is to attract tourists from Northern Europe at the beginning and end of the summer vacation season. «Over the past few years», Bernús pointed out, «these populations have demonstrated a growing interest in our island and are starting to bring increasingly large numbers of tourists along with them».

Formentera shares an informational stand at all three of the week's fairs with the rest of the Balearic Islands. From Wednesday (13th) to Sunday (17th) a guide contracted by the CiF will tell visitors at the Vakantiebeurs destination trade show in Utrecht, Netherlands about the charm of the southern Pitiusa island. From Thursday (14th) to Sunday (17th), Formentera will also have representatives at the Ferien de Viena fair in Austria. At the weekend, reps will continue by showing crowds at CMT (Stuttgart, Germany) the best Formentera has to offer.

Next week

Representatives of the island will continue their whirlwind tour of Europe's tourism fairs through next week. Monday January 18th a member of staff from Baltus – a local leader in advertising to travellers in Holland – will represent Formentera at a Turespaña event in the Hague. Later in the week Formentera will be present at Turespaña's stand at the Matka fair in Helsinki, Finland between January 21st and 24th. At the same fair, the island will also have its own stand in an area dedicated to island paradises.

 

Locals shoppers made 4,400 purchases this holiday season

Entrega premis premsaThe Formentera Council's trade office teamed up with the local chamber of commerce today to award prizes as part of a Christmas raffle. The eleven lucky winners had all taken part in “Compra a casa, compra a Formentera” a Christmas push to buy local and support island businesses. Trade secretary Alejandra Ferrer highlighted the success of a campaign which, in this, its second year, has put 4,400 raffle tickets in the pockets of Formentera shoppers—proof, the secretary said, “that more than 4,400 purchases were made at local businesses this holiday season”.

Expanding the campaign
Initially participation was open to any local business not trading in edible products, provided it continued operations through the year and put up Christmas decorations. However, given Formentera shoppers' warm reception of the campaign, Ferrer says next year will come with expansion to new areas, such as restaurants that are open year-round, which the secretary says should benefit from the buy-local incentives. Ferrer even alluded to the possibility of extending the campaign past the holiday season.

Eleven winners
Secretary Ferrer was joined by Juanma Costa, the chairman of the chamber of commerce, in handing out prizes to the eleven winners. Jaime Moll won a weekend on Eivissa for two, car and hotel included; Maria Magdalena received a Christmas ham and bottle of wine; Erika Escandell, two cinema tickets for two; Paquita Escandell, dinner for two at Acapulco; Begoña, a piece of art by Sol Courregues; Antonio Tur, a trip to Raquel's hair salon in la Savina (with cut, colour and styling); Rita, dinner for two at s'Abeurada den Simonet; Patricia Vázquez, a piece of art by Sol Courregues; Alicia Benito, a shellac nail session at BSC in la Savina; Isabel Roig, perfume from Artesanía Formentera in Sant Francesc; and Antònia, a set of books. Winners who were unable to unable to attend the ceremony can stop by the trade office (àrea de Comerç) of the Formentera Council to pick up their prize.

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