BENIDORM bars and restaurants are being forced to close because they can’t find enough staff.
The city’s Abreca hospitality association says another 3,000 employees are needed and that around 90% of businesses are suffering.
Shortages mean nobody is available to cover ‘days off’ resulting in businesses having to pull down the shutters at least one day per week.
Some outlets have temporarily closed until they get some workers and have even put up posters telling customers about their predicament.
Abreca’s Alex Fratini says the Covid pandemic changed the psyche of people over working in the hospitality trade.
“People don’t want to work at weekends and at holiday times as they want to enjoy life, “ he commented.
“I understand that but hospitality works when others don’t and we can’t change that,” added Fratini.
With hospitality operating as a seasonal trade in Benidorm, the pandemic stripped the area of people from areas like Madrid who travelled to work over the summer.
Renting some temporary accommodation has also become a key issue.
Alex Fratini said: “Many hospitality workers can’t afford the rent and owners prefer to let out to tourists to get a higher income with fewer problems.”
A cut-price rent scheme unveiled in February appears to have had little impact.
Fratini also criticised ‘unfair competition’ within the hospitality trade and accused some businesses of law-breaking that ‘stained the industry’s reputation’.