26/03/2012 Lanzarote (KMC) - The Cabildo has given the green light to the TUI tourist bus ‘Lanzarote Vision’. The decision was made on Friday morning by the government council and was confirmed by the Senior Vice President and Minister of Transport Joaquin Carabello.
‘Lanzarote Vision’ is a new tour around the main sites on the island with a fixed timetable and which will function like a public bus service. A ticket providing an unlimited day tour of Lanzarote is €19.50, with reduced prices for children. The buses will stop in each of the main tourist resorts of Costa Teguise, Puerto del Carmen and Playa Blanca and will call at each of the Islands Centres of Art, Culture and Tourism making attractions such as Timanfaya and Mirador del Rio much easier to get to.
Since its inception, the TUI project has been hindered by controversy. Officials had proposed several conditions that had to be met before the project was able to go ahead. It was meant to begin in February, with proposals submitted in September 2010, however the Cabildo of Lanzarote said the service had to have a qualified tour operator on board and also wanted a clear outline of which bus stops the company would be using and the pricing structure to ensure that it was in line with the legally established prices for this type of activity. TUI had hoped that instead of using a tour guide they could use recordings in various languages like those tour buses which already exist in many European cities.
Now according to Carabello “the company has proven that it has met all the requirements demanded of it in 2010 when the project was authorised.” It is likely though that the company will go ahead with their original plan to use audio headphones in various languages instead of using a tour guide.
The buses are due to launch on the 30th March and the project is largely seen as a good thing for Lanzarote as it will increase the mobility of tourists and will make Lanzarote’s must-see sites much more accessible for everyone on the island. However Aetur, the Federation of Tourist Businesses of Lanzarote are not in favour of the project, they argue that the Lanzarote Vision service will threaten jobs and affect other local businesses such as organised tours, bus services and taxi companies.