The Santa Cruz de Tenerife Carnival 2024: a driving force for the city’s economy

Year after year, Santa Cruz de Tenerife reinforces the economic significance of the festival, projected to draw 185,000 tourists to the capital in 2024.

The Santa Cruz de Tenerife Carnival stands as the foremost celebration of the island, embodying a rich tapestry of history, sentiment, tradition, and culture. It’s an event deeply ingrained in the lives of the locals, with hardly a resident without a connection to the festivities, be it through a family album brimming with costume photos or a box of Carnival attire eagerly awaited to be unveiled every February or March.

Beyond its cultural significance, the Carnival represents a significant economic boon for both the city and the island at large. Annually, it’s estimated to inject around 40 million euros into the local economy. The event itself has become a magnet for tourists, significantly boosting the city’s visibility and contributing to Santa Cruz’s national and international allure.

For perspective, the 2023 Carnival led to over 4,000 media mentions across press, radio, television, and digital platforms, equivalent to a 15 million euro advertising spend. Additionally, the festivities last year saw a record-breaking 19 million social media interactions via official channels.

The Santa Cruz de Tenerife Carnival: A Driving Force for the City's Economy

Carmen Pérez, CEO of the Development Company, highlights the dual role of the Carnival as both a grand celebration and a vital economic driver, drawing an estimated 350,000 to 400,000 participants – locals and tourists alike – who contribute approximately 40 million euros to various city sectors, including retail, hospitality, and services. She also points out the Carnival’s status as a ‘Fiesta of International Tourist Interest’, underscoring the event’s safety and the ongoing efforts to promote it both domestically and internationally as a unique and valuable tourism asset for Santa Cruz.

The festival’s allure extends beyond local participation, drawing a significant portion of Tenerife’s residents and attracting tourists from other parts of the island, the Archipelago, and beyond. This influx leads to high occupancy rates in local accommodations, with projections indicating a surge beyond last year’s 75% occupancy over the Carnival period, reaching near-total capacity on peak days. An estimated 185,000 tourists are expected, coinciding with the arrival of 11 cruise ships.

The Santa Cruz de Tenerife Carnival: A Driving Force for the City's Economy

The economic ripple effects are widespread, benefiting a variety of businesses, from restaurants and boutiques to toy stores and haberdasheries, marking the Carnival period as crucial for their financial health. Ultimately, the Santa Cruz Carnival not only enriches the cultural fabric of Tenerife’s capital but also significantly propels its economy.


Street festivities are the heart of the Carnival, epitomizing the bond between the community and their celebration. The 2024 edition is set to be a landmark year, emerging from the shadow of the pandemic. The initial weekend alone drew an estimated 300,000 attendees, enjoying parades and dances, with high expectations for the remainder of the festivities, especially the eagerly anticipated Piñata Saturday, which historically attracts massive crowds.

The Santa Cruz de Tenerife Carnival: A Driving Force for the City's Economy

Highlighting the scale of the event, the Piñata Saturday featured renowned artists like Luis Fonsi, Joseph Fonseca, and Kinito Méndez, ensuring a night filled with popular hits and vibrant performances. The evening’s climax was Luis Fonsi’s performance on the Anaga – Francisco La Roche avenue stage, that drew vast crowds with his international hit “Despacito”, among others.

In essence, the Santa Cruz Carnival transcends mere celebration, fostering significant economic activity and positioning itself as an indispensable feature of the city’s cultural and economic landscape.

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