Spanish tourism lost 252 million Euros over six days because of travel restrictions caused by the volcanic ash cloud which grounded air traffic in Europe, industry body Exceltur said on Wednesday.
Tourism accounts for around 11% of Spain’s gross domestic product. Airline losses are not included in the overall figure but it was not clear whether this figure took account of gains from hosting tourists forced to stay in Spain after their flights home were cancelled. No one at the institute was immediately available to comment.
The Icelandic volcano Eyjafjallajokull is still erupting but is spewing less ash, experts said on Wednesday. The ash cloud has not reached Madrid and the airport has remained open.
The British Embassy was operating a stand at Madrid’s Barajas airport to take passengers, who had flown into Madrid, up to northern France by bus to catch a ferry back to Britain.
There are no economy-class flights available from Madrid to London until May, the website of airline Iberia showed.