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Global Exchange records historic summer and proves post-pandemic tourism recovery

07 • 10 • 2022

Madrid, October 6th, 2022. The Global Exchange Group, second world leader company in airports for currency exchange services, has taken stock of the activity recorded this summer in its offices, where the purchase and sale of foreign currencies has exceeded pre-pandemic levels. This multinational, present in 61 top international airports of 23 countries and whose headquarters are in Salamanca, confirms the closure of a historic summer, where revenues have increased compared to the same period in 2019, both globally and for the Spanish subsidiary of the group.

For Isidoro Alanís, president and CEO of the Global Exchange Group,‘the figures show that tourism has emerged stronger from the COVID-19 crisis crisis that has paralysed the sector for more than two years, although we are still awaiting the recovery of tourism in Asia, where tighter restrictions remain in place, as well as in Russia, conditioned by the geopolitical conflict in which this country is immersed’. The results are positive for Alanís, who adds that the Group has globally seen its revenues grow by 16% so far this year compared to the same period in 2019.

The Spanish subsidiary of the Global Exchange Group also ended the summer season with an increase in activity. In Spain, the group has improved its revenues by 22% this summer compared to the figures obtained two years ago. ‘We have exceeded growth expectations in a historic summer for the Global Exchange Group’s foreign exchange branches in Spain’, he said.

Top 5 most demanded foreign currencies this summer

With regard to the most sold foreign currencies this summer at Global Exchange branches, the operations including dollars have grown by more than 25% compared to the 2019 summer season. This currency accounts for more than 65% of sales by the Spanish operator.
The list of foreign currencies most in demand by tourists this summer also includes pounds sterling, Mexican pesos, Turkish lira and Swiss francs The Chinese yuan and the Russian rouble disappear from the top positions, confirming the downward trend in tourism in these countries over the last two years.

Top 5 foreign exchange rates for euros

The exchange of US dollars has led the activity, representing more than 80% of the foreign currency received by the company this summer and confirming the recovery of this type of tourist above pre-pandemic levels. The appreciation of the dollar, together with the recovery of tourists coming from North America, have been the clear stimuli behind these good results.
Secondly, we find the exchange operations of the pound sterling, Mexican peso, Swiss franc and Australian dollar for euros. Comparing the figures with the summer period two years ago, the sale of euros to tourists in exchange for the Japanese yen is no longer in the top 5.

America, main market for Global Exchange Spain

North Americans lead the largest outbound market in Spain. They are followed by Argentinians, Mexicans, Colombians and British. In this way, the American continent is consolidating its position as the main market for the Spanish subsidiary of the Global Exchange Group.
In any case, the forecast for the recovery of Asian tourism is favourable, taking into account the opening-up measures proposed by governments such as those of Japan and Hong Kong. Japan has eased some of the health restrictions it maintains, by increasing the number of international tourists who can enter the country and eliminating the PCR for vaccinated people. Meanwhile, in the case of Hong Kong, its leaders have recently pointed to the abandonment of quarantine policies as of Friday 23 September and an orderly reopening of the territory.

Opening of new offices for VAT refund

One of the milestones for thecompany this summer has been the award by AENA of new offices for the management of VAT refunds at the airports of Madrid and Barcelona. In this way, the joint venture composed by the Global Exchange Group and Travel Tax Free as intermediaries of the service has processed one million operations and expects to reach more than four million by 2023.
The group currently handles 90 % of tax free operations thanks to its 18 branches, 11 at Adolfo Suarez Madrid-Barajas airport and seven at Josep Tarradellas Barcelona-El Prat During the summer months, tourist activity has also been of major importance in the management of this service. However, an increase in figures is expected linked to the recovery of Chinese and Russian tourism, which accounts for 40 % of tax refund activity.


You can read the whole article on Cinco Días website (only available in Spanish).

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