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Tag Results: Financial Crisis
Bilbao was once a decrepit port city on the north coast of Spain, famous for its decaying industrial complexes and stinking river. But since the Guggenheim landed on its banks in 1997, the city has seen an explosion in tourism, going from sleepy town to a must-see overnight. In a rush to recreate that “Bilbao Effect,” other Spanish cities have built flashy art centers, cultural landmarks, and infrastructure projects funded by taxpayers’ money. But Europe’s financial meltdown, combined with government mismanagement and poor attendance, have caused these grandiose projects to fall behind on their payments, resulting in a $25.5 billion bill and public backlash. So, did these structures cause a tourism boom, or are they just big budget bombs? Let’s find out. Read more
I was confident that we had closed the book on Europe’s need to work more and vacation less in “An Open Letter to Europe.” The only strong point that I missed (and that blogger Christine Cantera pointed out in the comments) is the need for our friends on the other side of the Atlantic to also cool it with the three-hour lunches so that some business can be conducted while the sun is still shining. I was ready to move on to more pressing travel matters, like the threat of Ryanair flights touching down on U.S. soil and why Egyptair kept serving me three rolls with every meal on a recent trip. Now, however, comes news that a court has ruled that Europeans who get sick on vacation are entitled to go on another holiday…that their employer must allow them to take. Europe, you’re killing me.
Author’s Note: In light of the recent financial crisis in Europe, it seems like the appropriate time to air some grievances regarding traditional practices in the region and how they affect tourism. By no means am I an economist, but I do have a checking account and a fair amount of common cents sense.
Hola. Bonjour. Γεια σας. While I hope that this note finds you well, I know that things have been a little rough on your side of the pond lately. With unemployment in Spain close to 25 percent, at least I know nearly six million people will have time to read this letter. Sorry, that was harsh. I’m not writing this to antagonize you or make light of your economic collapse. On the contrary, I’m here to help. Europe has long relied on tourism to fill its coffers, and summer is prime time for Americans to flock to your ruins, relics, and monuments (your stuff sure is old).
You need Americans to visit you. We need a strong Europe to bolster the global economy. So, how can we get things straightened out over there and encourage Americans to head your way? Here, in no particular order, are a few simple suggestions that you can have for free (which, I imagine, is a pretty good price for you these days). Read more
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