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HomeWorld NewsBrits asking Tenerife hotels if they’ll be SAFE amid anti-tourist surge

Brits asking Tenerife hotels if they’ll be SAFE amid anti-tourist surge

BRITISH tourists are phoning hotels in Tenerife ahead of their sunshine breaks to ask if they’ll be safe on the island.

Residents of the largest Canary Island seem to be at war with UK holidaymakers as they blast visitors with anti-tourism graffiti and emerging local campaigns.

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Brits are calling up hotels in Tenerife to ensure safety amid rising anti-tourist sentimentsCredit: Alamy
Tenerife's locals say they are 'fed-up' of Brit tourists who only come for the beer, beaches and sun

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Tenerife’s locals say they are ‘fed-up’ of Brit tourists who only come for the beer, beaches and sun
Anti-tourist graffiti has been spotted on the island as locals grow dissatisfied

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Anti-tourist graffiti has been spotted on the island as locals grow dissatisfied
Residents protest over the cost of living and unfair wages as a result of mass tourism

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Residents protest over the cost of living and unfair wages as a result of mass tourismCredit: Canarian Weekly

Locals have been fuming that they are “fed-up” with “low quality” Brit tourists who only come for the cheap beer, burgers and sunbathing.

Now, they are demanding a tourist tax, fewer flights to the island and a clampdown on foreigners buying houses.

And it follows a wave of anti-tourist graffiti that has been sprayed across the island to tell Brits they are not welcome.

Bitter messages outside tourism hotspots read “your paradise, our misery” and “tourists go home”.

“Locals are forced to move out and YOU are responsible for that,” said a furious printed sign.

Another read: “Tourists go home!”

Owners of hotel chains are now getting calls from anxious Brit tourists ahead of their vacation in the holiday hotspot who are worried for their safety.

Jorge Marichal, a hotel chain boss on the island, said: “One of the problems I am facing is that clients are beginning to call and ask what’s happening here and whether it’s safe.

“It’s happening in some hotels.”

While the hotel owner said he understands the pain of local people, he added that being “anti-tourist” is not the way to go in.

“People see they have to spend more time on the roads and they can’t access housing because residential properties have become tourist dwellings and they can’t afford the rents now being charged in many areas.

“It’s normal there’s a certain unease among the island population because I also feel it.

“[But] It pains me because people confuse the message. We don’t have to be anti-tourist. What we have to do is demand infrastructure that matches the tourist model that’s been chosen.

Local campaigners are now expected to take to the streets on five of the archipelago’s islands, including Tenerife, Gran Canaria and Lanzarote, on April 20.

The demonstration in Teneriffe is predicted to be the largest in the island’s history.

Protesters will chant the slogan “The Canary Islands have a limit” as they lay out their demands against the effect mass tourism has on the cost of housing.

It pains me because people confuse the message. We don’t have to be anti-tourist

Jorge MarichalHotel boss in Tenerife

Groups in Tenerife, Gran Canaria and Lanzarote, three of the most popular islands of the archipelago for British visitors, have all pledged to take part.

The one in Tenerife, which revealed last week it had broke records for tourist arrivals in 2023 with a staggering 6.5 million people visiting the island, is being billed as the largest demonstration in its history.

Some protesters are claiming that their anger is directed at the government rather than tourists as they ask for change.

They claim that AirBnBs and other holiday rentals are driving up the cost of living and that they are sick of the noise, traffic and rubbish that accompany the avalanche of vacationers that visit every year.

Jaime Coello, president of the Telesforo Bravo Foundation, said: “The quality of the tourist product is being destroyed by the investors and the regional government.”

The brewing chaos coupled with hatred for visitors is now scaring Brit tourists to go on a vacation in Tenerife.

Meanwhile, Canary Island’s president Fernando Clavijo expressed his concern over the growing anti-tourism movement and asked the holidaymakers to keep coming.

He said: “We are worried because tourism is our main source of income and I think that whoever comes here to enjoy, to spend a few days and to leave their money in the Canary Islands, shouldn’t be rebuked or face insults.”

TOURIST TRAP

A RISING number of visitors in idyllic holiday hotspots is forcing out locals.

  • Important amenities such as post offices and village shops are being disposed of to make way for more houses and cafes for tourists.
  • Locals are also struggling to climb on the property ladder as many houses sit empty, being used as second homes and holiday lets.
  • In some hotspots this has created a major housing crisis as demand for accommodation and second homes drives house prices sky high.
  • Road infrastructure and parking systems often can’t cope with more tourists – leading to traffic chaos and safety concerns.
  • The issues see younger families leaving the area, in turn making it harder for community members left behind

Expats fight back

Many expats and tourists have fought back by arguing the anti-tourism war is wrong and misguided.

One the response left in English on a wall next to a “Tourists go home” message said: “F**k off, we pay your wages.”

Melissa Taylor, 47, who runs an English pub in Las Playas de las Americas told The Mail that the anti-tourism stuff was “unfair” as without tourism there would be “nothing here”.

She added: “Brits come here and spend a lot of money, the overwhelming majority of our customers are from the UK.”

And Irish expat Bronagh Maheor, 23, also slammed the locals protests as “totally unfair”, stating that without tourists “there would not be hotels or businesses.

“I’d be out of a job, we need them,” he argued.

The Canary Islands Tourism Board has also denied there has been an influx of tourists and claimed figures are the same with pre-pandemic levels.

A spokesperson for the Board told the Mirror that the influx of tourists is stable throughout the year.

They added: “The pressure on the territory and its resources and the local population is much less than in other destinations that concentrate the arrival of tourists in specific periods of the year.”

And, another professor at Las Palmas University claimed “most of the population” still welcomes tourism.

“The great majority understand it adds value to them, in terms of the flow of culture, the cultural value of tourists from Germany, Sweden, Britain.

“People are very happy with the British coming to the Canary Islands.”

Signs to discourage tourists from visiting the island can be found everywhere

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Signs to discourage tourists from visiting the island can be found everywhere
The protesters are concerned about the environmental effects of tourism

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The protesters are concerned about the environmental effects of tourismCredit: Canarian Weekly
British expats have fought back, arguing Tenerife relies on tourists

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British expats have fought back, arguing Tenerife relies on touristsCredit: Alamy
Tenerife remains one of the top tourist destinations for Brits

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Tenerife remains one of the top tourist destinations for Brits

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