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Living in Europe: An update from the team at The Local

There's no doubt living, working and moving around Europe has become far more challenging in recent months. For all of us.

Living in Europe: An update from the team at The Local
Life in Europe is not like it was. Cyclists drive past chairs and tables of a still closed restaurant at the Alter Markt place, where works are under way for the reopening in Dortmund. AFP

Normal daily life has changed, travel has become more complicated and jobs and small businesses are under threat.

During these turbulent times, we at The Local pledge to provide you with all the essential news and information you need to stay informed with what's happening in the country where you live or love to visit.
Over the coming months we promise to:
  • Bring you everything you need to know about how the coronavirus crisis continues to impact European countries over the coming weeks and months.
  • Explain all the rules, regulations or health guidelines you have to follow 
  • Cover essential issues from travel and taxes, to jobs and work permits, borders and Brexit.
  • Answer your crucial questions and ask them, on your behalf, to authorities and we'll help you learn the local language in each country.
The weeks ahead will be extremely challenging for us at The Local given advertising revenue has plunged by around 70 percent compared to last year.
We have survived the crisis up until now because of the thousands of readers who became members in recent months and the thousands more who renewed their memberships. We are very grateful, as are our regular readers.
Without our members' support we wouldn't have been able to produce the articles, many of which we made free to all, that millions are reading each month.
We currently have around 25,000 members of The Local community. We've come a long way from when the The Local began in 2004 in the form of a newsletter sent to 12 people in a language class.
But our urgent goal is to grow our community to over 40,000 so we can cover our costs, become sustainable and not have to rely on advertising for survival.
Every member counts, so we could do with your help to spread the word. Tell your friends and colleagues about us or share our stories with them.
In return we'll continue to work hard and publish dozens of articles each week to explain life around Europe.
You should also know we are reinvesting members' contributions by bringing on board new writers, increasing weekend coverage and upgrading our apps.
This has been possible thanks to a grant from the Solutions Journalism Network.
We hope you stay with us over the coming months as we report and explain all the relevant news and changes that affect you.
And remember the best way to keep up to date is by downloading our iOS or Android phone apps, and by joining the conversations on Facebook or Twitter.
A big thanks to all our readers from everyone at The Local.

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Which Spanish regions have the cheapest holiday rentals this summer?

With the Spanish tourism sector having almost surpassed pre-pandemic levels, new data has revealed where the cheapest holiday rentals are this summer, as well the places filling up the fastest.

Which Spanish regions have the cheapest holiday rentals this summer?

Tourism in Spain is accelerating towards a record-breaking year in 2023. Spain already set a new record for tourism in April, welcoming 7.2 million international tourists and surpassing pre-pandemic levels. 

Spain’s Minister of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, Héctor Gómez, predicts that Spain will receive even more this summer, between 52.3 and 54.8 million foreign tourists from May to October 2023.

READ ALSO: ‘Recovery is complete’ – Spain sets new record for tourism in April

Because of this, holiday rentals in many parts of the country are filling up fast, and prices are rising quickly.

Which are the cheapest regions?

Spanish holiday website Hildu has ranked the cheapest holiday rental prices by region, analysing both the seasonal prices and occupancy rates in different regions during the summer months.

According to the study, over the summer, the average rental price in Spain is around €172 per night, a 13 percent increase on prices last summer for the same dates. Spain has also already reached an 82 percent occupancy rate for the summer so far.

The high demand for holiday rentals, which could be anything from a private villa to a cosy flat in a charming old town, as opposed to a traditional hotel, is reflected in Holidu’s survey of 2,471 holiday homeowners.

The findings show that 52 percent of Spanish owners predict more reservations than last year and that 48 percent say that they will increase their prices this year.

READ ALSO: Where in Spain have hotel prices risen the most?

Of all the Spanish regions, the Canary Islands has the cheapest average rental prices. Holiday rents in the Atlantic archipelago cost €104 per night, on average.

Extremadura and Galicia come in joint second, with average prices of €105 per night.

Renting a place for a night in Murcia costs an average of €110 per night, while in Asturias and Castilla y León prices are €114 and €115 respectively.

Of the other regions, an average night’s stay in La Rioja costs €119; Aragón and Cantabria (€120), Navarre (€121), Castilla-La Mancha (€131), Valencia (€134) and Andalusia (€141).

Some of the most expensive regions to rent a holiday home this summer are Catalonia, the Basque Country and Madrid. Summer holiday rentals in Catalonia average €161 a night, while in the Basque Country they are €178 and Madrid €180 per night.

For the second consecutive year, the Balearic Islands are the most expensive Spanish tourist destination for holiday rentals, where stays cost around €253 per night for the summer season.

High occupancy

Many destinations all across Spain are already hitting 80 percent occupancy rates for the summer season.

Among the most reserved destinations for this summer, Catalonia and Valencia are already at 88 percent occupancy, followed by Madrid and the Balearic Islands, where the average occupancy is around 87 percent as of early June.

Andalusia, the Basque Country, Castilla-La Mancha and Castilla y León have all reached 85 percent occupancy, while in Cantabria it is 82 percent and the Canary Islands at 80 percent occupancy.

International visitors

As has been the case for decades, Spain is preparing to receive tourists from all over the world. According to Holidu, 66 percent of the total reservations for the summer months made so far are by Spaniards.

12 percent of reservations have come from Germany, eight percent from France, and four percent from the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.