Cancun, Q.R. – The continual devaluation of the Mexican peso has the state tourism sector generating an emergency plan to help sell vacation packages.
With the arrival of spring break, many foreigners will take advantage of the high US exchange rate, however for domestic travelers, the high dollar does not provide the same level of value.
The tourism sector of Quintana Roo along with national travel agencies have launched an emergency plan to sell vacation packages in pesos, not dollars, to avoid what they anticipate, will be a sharp drop in domestic travel. Without the plan, tourism officials say they could experience a decline of between nine and 13 percent due to the historically high US dollar.
“The Hotel Association of Cancun and Puerto Morelos is establishing an emergency plan to ensure national tourism during Easter as it is an important segment that could decline because of dollarization,” explained Alejandro Alvarado Muro, director of the Hotel Association.
Normally hotel rates are sold in US dollars. Officials are hoping to maintain the pace of tourism that has been occurring in Cancun since 2014 with hotel occupation rates above 80 percent. However with Spring Break beginning March 20, tourism officials fear that both Canadian and domestic tourism will fall behind since the high US dollar is only financially beneficial for Americans.
Muro says that domestic tourism makes up more than half of the visitors to the region during the Spring Break holiday season and with the peso-dollar approaching the 20 units per dollar parity, some tourism companies such as Almundo, Norwegian cruise lines and Royal Caribbean (in the past year) have begun offering vacation packages to consumers in pesos rather than in US dollars.
Other travel companies such as Travel Palace are offering Mexican travelers American vacation packages to Las Vegas, Orlando and New York in Mexican pesos.