Island launches reservations platform for July and August drivers

foto-presentacio---web-reserve1The Formentera Council convened the local tourism sector and islanders at large for an unveiling of the website, a presentation aimed at bringing people up to speed on the new reservations platform for anyone planning to drive on the island in July and August.

As the event got underway at 10.00am in the Council's Sala de Plens, Jaume Ferrer gave an overview of everything that's happened since the Consell d'Entitats formulated the original request—(“regulate the vehicles coming onto Formentera to avoid highway saturation during the core months of the season”)—back in 2014.

“We've been at it since then”, said Ferrer, “and this year, on January 29, legislation for Formentera's environmental and economic stability finally took effect, giving us the authority to determine how vehicles are brought onto the island”. With decision-making authority, plus the buy-in of both the Consell d'Entitats and the administration's plenary assembly, Formentera came up with a cap on the number of vehicles that will be allowed on local roads during the first months of what is a ground-breaking programme in Spain. A key part of getting there was the creation of the website, which was unveiled today.

CiF communications chief Elena Trinidad led a demo of the website, pointing up its four functionalities, the first of which is a search engine which enables tourists to view a calendar of availability and determine (and reserve) the dates of their visit. Tourists must pay one euro per day to bring a car, or fifty cents daily for scooters. A first email will be sent to verify the reservation; a second email contains a link to complete payment.

The second functionality, for individuals, businesses and operators of certain vehicles, is a one-stop process enabling motorists to obtain the authorisation for the rest of the season. With this feature, Formentera residents can register their personal vehicles at no cost and are not submitted to limits.

The third part of the website enables drivers to use their vehicle plate number to check if a reservation has been processed correctly. A fourth section of the platform will feature all the details about the project, including downloadable, shareable material and other useful info like public transport schedules.

Automatic accreditation
CiF mobility councillor Rafael González pointed out that if a vehicle has a blue and green zone parking permit, accreditation to be on the road in July and August is automatic. Council officials say they expect the synching of and the administration's own database—enabling islanders to see if they've received the automatic go-ahead—to be completed this May.

González stressed that car-hire companies can complete multiple registrations at the same time for vehicles within the same fleet. Businesses will be contacted in May and provided log-info enabling them access to a dedicated section of the new platform.

Eye on tourism
For her part, CiF tourism councillor Alejandra Ferrer underscored her department's efforts to ensure the aesthetics of the project squared with the island's message for tourists. Staff trawled the department's catalogue of images to put forward a sustainable vision of Formentera. The department has also been contributing information to the site and made it a talking point at travel expos since January. The global response has been extremely positive.

“Travelers from outside Spain don't typically bring their vehicles when they visit”, said Ferrer, “but we've detected a great deal of interest at travel expos”. “Feedback has been fabulous”, she continued, “people get that this is about conservation, which happens to be a core interest for most of our visitors”.

The website will be translated in six languages. Today's grand-opening was in Catalan and tomorrow will see the addition of Spanish and English, with the Italian, French and German equivalents expected up in May.

April 15, 2019
Àrea de Comunicació
Formentera Council