Benidorm hotel workers over-worked and under-paid

IN Benidorm, hotel workers have heavier work loads than most other Spanish destinations, according to a study by the workers’ union CCOO. While in places like Barcelona, Madrid and Palma de Mallorca, each employee attends an average of 5.8, 6.3, 6.6 guests respectively, in Benidorm they attend 7.9.

Only Catalonian destinations including Salou and Lloret de Mar attend to more guests; between 9 and 10.

This throws light on the job insecurity that the sector continues to suffer in the Costa Blanca and is believed to be a direct consequence of the price war which occurred in Benidorm.

“This lead to businesses reducing employees and labour costs in a bid to stay profitable,” explained Salvador Roig, CCOO secretary.

“Workers who have managed to keep their jobs have to do so working more hours for the same wage,” he added.

The average price per hotel room in Benidorm fell by 18 per cent last year from 2009’s €96 to just €76 during 2010, according to the web portal Price Index.

Hosbec president Antonio Mayor said that the lower prices were given in a bid to “save the hotel industry’s turnover” and assured that “in 2011 this situation will not reoccur.”

“You can see the bottle as half full or half empty, but the fact remains that Benidorm’s hotel workers are under greater pressure and have a higher workload that other areas,” said Roig.

“This increases occupational risks for workers due to fatigue,” he added, and that “some employers use the fear of loosing ones job to worsen working conditions.”

“It is important that tourism levels are restored, but must also be accompanied by an increase in staff.”

By Nicole Hallett


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