Portugal confident in the recovery of Canadian tourism in 2021

Initiatives to revitalize tourism

The idyllic scenery of Cascais, a coastal town 20 miles west of Lisbon.  

Photo by Junta de Turismo da Costa do Estoril  


By Luis Aparicio | Published 27/10/2020

Portugal launches initiatives to revitalize tourism due to the turbulent events of the pandemic, by fortifying the Canadian market.

The Portuguese tourism sector is seeking to minimize the extraordinary upheaval experienced with the COVID-19 pandemic during the first quarter of 2020.  Its aim is to utilize the remaining months of 2020, as a springboard for 2021 – when the economy is expected to recover.

Portugal is one of the first countries in Europe to begin preparing for the economy’s reopening. William Delgado, Director for Canada at Turismo de Portugal (photo), told Discover magazine, “We were the first country to have a program called Clean and Safe , and now we are once again leading with new ideas to facilitate the reopening of tourism with a travel insurance program.”

According to Delgado, Portugal is prepared to welcome tourists despite COVID-19. Those planning to vacation in Portugal, can now apply for the Portugal Travel Insurance. It is travel insurance that has been adapted to meet the complex realities of the COVID-19 pandemic.  The initiative originated from RNA Assistance Insurance. The insurance is for the entire national territory and covers medical, surgical, pharmaceutical, and hospital expenses associated with COVID-19.

Safe and Reliable Travel

The Portugal Travel Insurance will still cover cancellation, trip interruption expenses or extension due to the pandemic.  The goal is to ensure the personal safety and security of tourists while traveling within the country.

This is another initiative that Visit Portugal is implementing in international markets to strengthen the safety of the destination.  This is in addition to the creation of the Clean and Safe stamp and the renewal of the Portugal Health Passport, which now includes the possibility of testing for COVID-19 and is available to all tourists visiting the country.

Losses and Recovery:  Flights with 2021 Destinations

Portugal is among the countries that are expected to experience losses in the tourism sector, exceeding 2% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a report by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), released in August.

Tourism in Portugal reached impressive numbers in 2019, with greater emphasis on employment growth, tourism and market diversification. The Canadian tourism sector was no different, confirming the trend of annual growth in the number of visitors and increase in tourism  revenues.

William Delgado recognizes that 2020 is a challenging year for the Turismo de Portugal. He believes that with the relaxation of some restrictions, the confidence of tourists will increase. Delgado also stated that “Canada will be one of the first markets to resume international travel starting as early as the winter of 2020 – 2021.”


Destination Montreal

TAP Air Portugal is one of the four main airlines operating between Portugal and Canada.  It has reinforced its commitment to the Canadian market, and is now flying to Montreal.  This is a new destination that has been added to the Lisbon -Toronto route, one that this Portuguese company has been offering since the summer of 2017.

Along with the increased frequency of flights to Canada, TAP has announced that it will reinforce its network in October, with 82 routes and offering 666 flights weekly.  This will include more destinations to Brazil and the United States.

The teams from Turismo de Portugal have intensified their work with airlines, tour operators, end consumers and the press with the objective to bring attention to Portugal and to stimulate the recovery of tourism.

William Delgado, stated that promoting Portugal as a tourist destination has been supported by virtual components and has worked well, but it will not mean that online interaction will replace personal contact.

Delgado hopes to participate in informative online projects with the expectation of organizing a virtual fair with the Canadian Snowbird Association.


We encourage you to read the latest edition of Discover Magazine

October 2020 – https://www.magazinediscover.com/discover-digital/                                                                        

Luis Aparício

Luis is a freelance journalist with experience in daily news in Portugal . He collaborates with local Portuguese newspapers in Toronto.

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