Will Ibiza 2021 Happen?

The BIG Question

Will Ibiza 2021 Happen? This is the question I’m asked more than any other. The desperation for a holiday is growing and many are starting to plan for the summer, looking for any morsel of information with the hope that life can return to something resembling normal.

As many industry leaders have alluded to, Spain simply can’t afford to keep its doors closed for another summer, the economic fallout would be devastating for a country already on its knees (but doing a good job of concealing it). The debate about opening up at Easter has shown that the issue is front and centre. It went from ‘never’ to ‘possibly’ to ‘probably’ in the space of a few days. The pressure is already mounting for Spain and especially the islands to open sooner rather than later.

Ibiza summer 2021, in my opinion, will definitely happen but many factors will dictate who can get here and what they can do once they are here. Separate countries have their own agendas so mixed messages are constant about who can travel and when that can start although there does appear to be a collective will to get on with things but only when it is safe to do so.

The key issue is the vaccination program which is running at differing paces all over the world but this will level out over the coming weeks and months as more vaccine availability comes to the market, it won’t be long until we are buying it in petrol stations and newsagents.

Cyprus has already stated that they will welcome the ‘jabbed’ with open arms but they will also continue to accept PCR certificates on arrival and I think this will become the short term standard, this summer will be all about ‘proof’, being able to prove that you have had a vaccination or that you have had a negative test within 72 hours of travel.

It’s logical that a ‘vaccination passport’ will follow in time but as some countries are ahead of the curve while others are lagging behind this summer will be about creating an acceptable framework for arrivals while trying not exclude anyone who can prove they’re healthy but also retaining integrity and control. It will be a fine balance.

Balearic airports may also continue to offer test on arrival but it remains to be seen if this is viable for mass tourism but as techniques become speedier and more simplified it could be a short term solution. The bottom line is that tourist destinations need to protect themselves by offering a safe destination and those that do will ultimately be the market leaders in 2021 so the the stakes are very high.

Getting here is only half of the story because every destination needs to offer its tourists something to do. The turquoise blue sea, beautiful beaches and amazing climate are always going to be here but what about the restaurants, bars and clubs? As we saw in 2020 there’s no shortage of Ibiza entrepreneurs ready and able to tinker with their product to cater for the ever changing nature of post-pandemic travel.

2021, I think, will continue in the same vein as last summer where large gatherings in one place without social distancing were a definite no-no. Beach clubs adapted by going full chill out and restaurants and bars used terraces and outdoor space to the maximum while keeping tables apart. Unless there’s a major shift in a short time the large clubs will either have to adapt their environments or wait for the green light which could come as soon as mid to late summer but only if the data is positive and that’s a big ‘if’.

I’m expecting a quiet start to the summer but gaining in strength throughout the season with the realistic prospect that by mid to late summer the White Isle might be back to something like we all remember (it could be the busiest October we’ve ever seen). There will be twists and turns along the way but Ibiza 2021 is moving in the right direction, the outlook is positive.

Author: Martin Makepeace

Englishman living and working in Ibiza since 1991. Entrepreneur with a passion for villas, boats, sunsets and San Antonio. Read my blogs, listen to my podcasts and catch me on Radio One Mallorca every Tuesday morning.

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