Bonuses to make a comeback, says Secretary of State
According to the Secretary of Estate, who was speaking at the Parliamentary Committee of Budget in Lisbon, action is being taken in order to cut public expense and create conditions to reinstate the two annual bonuses, an important part of the Portuguese workers’s income.
Used to spending their bonuses on other expenses such as car insurance, the Portuguese are cutting back on travelling, which is taking a toll in the national economy, particularly in the tourism sector. In 2011 alone, the number of holiday trips dropped by 1.2% from the year before to a total of 15,2 million trips, 90.4% of which took place on national soil. Heavily dependent on tourism, the Algarve is struggling to attract visitors: according to the Algarve Hotel and Tourism Development Association (AHETA), the month of May saw one of its worst occupancy rates in 16 years (55.2%).