Malaga airport wins duty free war

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AIR PASSENGERS spend more money on duty free at Malaga airport than any other in Spain, it has been announced.

Shops in the airport, which occupy around 15,000 square metres of its total space, have seen business booming, with over 16.6 million passengers passing through the airport last year.

Despite Malaga being only Spain’s third largest airport, it is thought travellers spend the most money here because the expanded shopping area has received so much funding, amounting to around €300 million. Analysts also believe the high proportion of local products sold has contributed to the airport’s success, with tourists buying last-minute traditional gifts for friends and family before flying home.

The Russians are king when it comes to spending the most. According to Fernandez Bosch, Commercial Services Director of Aena, Malaga’s operator, “”A third of the passengers are British, and they like to purchase in these shops. They spend more at the airport than the Germans. The proportion of Scandinavians and French is also notable. And Russians stand out because they spend a lot.”

As well as putting Malaga firmly on Spain’s tourism map, the airport’s duty free success also contributes heavily to the local economy, with 1,000 of the hub’s 6,000 employees working in its stores.

The space houses 25 stores, seven of which are duty free and 7,000 square metres of cafes and restaurants. The most purchased item is vodka, followed by gin. Sixty thousand bottles of local wine also leave the shelves each year.

In addition, 2 million hot drinks are sold each year; 1.5 million sandwiches, and 1 million toblerones; a beloved classic for the traveller.

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