Tourist bookings through eDreams already exceed pre-pandemic levels

The activity has grown by 2% in June compared to the same month of 2019, but customers still spend 29% less

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A couple of tourists at the Plaza Real in Barcelona

BarcelonaThe tourism sector is beginning to see light at the end of the tunnel. The online travel agency eDreams has surpassed the activity it recorded before the pandemic in June of this year. Specifically, the company has managed 2% more bookings than in June 2019, which it attributes both to the good rates of vaccination and the easing of restrictions aswell as the digital nature of the company, which is bringing customers who previously would have used other means. That said, these bookings are still on average for less than they were before the pandemic.

"The unique proposition offered by the company to its customers, combined with a growing demand for leisure travel as more people become vaccinated and restrictions are eased, is allowing the online travel agency to attract more travelers and capture market share from its competitors", details eDreams in a statement sent to the National Securities Market Commission (CNMV) on Monday.

If the digital travel agency celebrates this a priori discrete increase of 2%, it is because of the context that it seems to be beginning to leave behind. As reviewed in the same document, bookings during April were 51% lower than the same month two years ago and, although in May this comparison allowed to be a little more optimistic, the activity was still 22% lower.

Short-haul and lower cost travel

The only cloud that shadows this scenario is that the amount spent by customers on travel is still below pre-pandemic levels: the average value of the shopping basket is 29% below that of 2019. Here they point to "constraints and uncertainty", which mean that "there is a large number of consumers booking short-haul travel, with fewer passengers per booking and therefore a lower booking value".

"While the long-term outlook for leisure travel is very solid, in the coming months there may be some volatility", they anticipate from the company. "It is clear that the pandemic has not affected the desire to travel for pleasure, but government restrictions continue to change and the usual seasonality patterns are being left behind", they add.