Tenerife was plunged into level four on Monday January 10 and the restrictions are expected to last until at least January 20. With the service industry heavily impacted, hospitality workers are sure to suffer. Ferghal Flaherty, an Irish expat who co-owns an Irish pub on the island, criticized the new measures.
The Irishman, co-owner of Irish music pub The Hole in the Wall, took to Facebook to express his distress and annoyance that Tenerife was implementing new Covid measures which would affect tourism.
He said: “What a difference one day makes. The new restrictions are just killing joy.
“It’s so hard to turn down our regulars and see the disappointment on their faces.”
Ferghal has been forced to close to some customers as new restrictions require hotel and restaurant capacity to be reduced to 75% outdoors and 33% indoors.
On the second level, the indoor capacity of bars, restaurants and cafes was limited to 50%.
Another restriction, reported by whatsontenerife.com, stated: “Non-EU residents (including England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) must be fully vaccinated to enter Tenerife.
“You must be fully vaccinated to enter bars, restaurants and cafes with a capacity of 30 people or more.”
While Level 3 allowed bars and restaurants to stay open until 1am if their license permitted, Level 4 requires hotel businesses to close at midnight.
Ferghal continued: “To believe that cutting the hospitality industry by another 17% and one hour less will stop the infection rate is absurd.
“They allow thousands of tourists on the island but they don’t want them having fun. Yes, people come for the winter sun, but if they force many of our other entertainment establishments to close , a large percentage of tourists will not come.
According to European Best Destinations, Tenerife is “the favorite destination for sun lovers; it is perfect for children and adults”.
However, tourists visiting the island are likely to have problems letting loose and having fun amid the strict new rules.
READ MORE: How the Queen Mother altered King George VI’s engagement ring
In addition to reduced capacity in bars, holidaymakers will be required to wear masks indoors unless seated at a table.
The festivities and meetings between tourists will take a back seat for the moment, to the chagrin of holidaymakers.
Still, Hole in the Wall co-owner Ferghal remains optimistic and resilient.
He said: ‘We are the heart and soul of the tourism industry and deceive them if they think doing what they are doing is going to solve the problem.
READ MORE: Tesco, Aldi, Asda and others recall popular foods due to health concerns
He went on to say that while the easiest option would have been to cut their losses, he felt responsible to their “loyal family”, which kept them alive.
“We’ve had good weeks and bad weeks, but we’re moving in the right direction, our hard work and passion for what we do will outshine any power-hungry government officials who have never gotten their hands dirty working honestly or anyone who feeds on the death of other people.”
Ferghal concluded: “Where there is unity, there is victory.”
Irish pub lovers flocked to comments expressing their gratitude for the Hole in the Wall; Ann Kennell called the news “soul destroying” for the pub.
Murray Leith said: “Every government is a disgrace right now. None of them have a clue what they are doing. They are slowing down the death of the hospitality industry and everything connected with it. .”