We NEED Britons: Canary Islands beg locals to stop tourist hate campaign

Canary Island's beach

The tourism minister has urged locals to change their perspectives

Holly Bishop

By Holly Bishop

Published: 01/09/2023

- 08:47

Updated: 01/09/2023

- 08:56

Angry locals have taken to the streets wielding signs saying 'The Canaries are no longer a paradise'

Canary Island officials have urged locals to give up their ‘tourismphobia’ as they have admitted they need Brits to boost the island’s economy.

Disgruntled residents have recently taken to the streets to protest against tourists coming to the islands.

They are demanding new laws be brought in to protect permanent residents and are also campaigning for restrictions that would apply specifically to tourists.

However, the new tourism minister Jessica de Leon, had urged residents to change their opinions for the sake of the economy.

Puerto de la Cruz coast, Tenerife

Tourism accounts for 35 per cent of the island's GDP

Wikimedia Commons

“The tourismphobia that is being fuelled by some sectors in the Canary Islands is beginning to get worrying,” she told the Canary Weekly.

“Tourism is colliding with residents, but we must face these points of conflict and tackle them head-on, as in the case of housing.”

According to de Leon, tourism accounts for 35 per cent of the Canary Islands' GDP.

Canary Weekly reported that travel sources were uneasy about de Leon’s statement, as they did not want travel bosses to feel targeted on behalf of their customers.

This comes as enraged locals have gathered to voice their frustrations with tourists who visit the islands.

Signs held by protestors read: “The Canaries are no longer a paradise” and “The Canaries are not for sale”.

A spokesperson for the protest group told Canary Weekly: “Mass tourism has destroyed numerous natural spaces throughout the archipelago, and caused the degradation of many others due to the unsustainable pressure exerted by the 13 million tourists who visit the islands each year.”

They are demanding that the number of available rooms in hotels be reduced and that the construction of new tourist buildings be restricted.

Jet2 plane

Jet2's CEO called out Lanzarote's president after she made a jab at British holidaymakers


The group said that the influx of tourists places great stress on the locals.

“The population suffers chronic stress due to the great tourist pressure in the area,” the demonstrators explained.

Earlier this month, Jet2’s CEO called out Lanzarote’s president after she took a hit at British tourists.

President Dolores Corujo said she wanted the island’s tourism market to steer away from Brits and instead focus on “higher quality holidaymakers”.

Steve Heapy, Jet2’s CEO, said: “As the largest UK tour operator to Lanzarote, I contacted her for clarification over her inflammatory and quite frankly offensive comments about British tourists.”

Heapy said that he wanted to understand her comments and to what extent she wants to reduce British tourism.

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