The price of renting a beach umbrella at Bulgaria’s Irakli is the highest along the country’s Black Sea coastline, at 36 leva (just more than 18 euro) a day, according to a report by public broadcaster Bulgarian National Television.
As is usual, prices of chaise longue and umbrella rentals are highest at the large resort complexes on Bulgaria’s Black Sea beaches, the report said.
At Sunny Beach, where the beaches are managed by a total of three concession-holders, the price is the same everywhere, 10 leva from an umbrella and 10 leva for a sunbed.
According to the report, although the current prices have been in force for 20 days, signs at the resort still state the price as eight leva. Hoteliers at the resort said that the state should remove concession fees, and in return, they would offer umbrellas and sunbeds free of charge.
People complained that there were not enough “free zones” – meaning areas of the beach covered by a concession where there is space to sit and put up your own umbrella without paying – and that sunbeds and umbrellas were too expensive.
Bulgarian law says that beaches under concession must have free zones of 50 per cent. In many places, however, a simple calculation showed that the free-of-charge area was much smaller, the report said.
At Nessebar, the price of an umbrella and sunbed is eight leva each, but if two people are renting, a total of 24 leva. The price at Elenite was the same, and at Sveti Vlas, except on the western beach, where it was a lev cheaper. Bathers at Nessebar also complained that the free zone was insufficient.
At Ravda, sunbeds and umbrellas cost six leva. Along the southern Black Sea coast of Bulgaria, prices are generally lower, about four leva for a sunbed and umbrella.
According to the report, about the cheapest is Bourgas’s North Beach, where the prices are three leva for an umbrella and three leva for a sunbed.
At Bourgas’s Central Beach, the service is free – but by noon there are practically no places, the report said.
According to Bulgaria’s National Statistical Institute, the first quarter of 2016 showed an average monthly salary in Bulgaria as 952 leva – ranging from the highest in Sofia, at about 1100 leva, to the lowest in the region of the north-western city of Vidin, at about 460 leva.
Or if you prefer, going by the report and the official statistics, someone from Vidin could rent a sunbed and umbrella at Irakli for about 12 days, provided that no spending went on anything else. A Sofian’s salary, however, would buy shade and a sunbed at Irakli for a month. Again, in this mischievous calculation, that is if neither spent anything on food, drink or petrol to drive to the beach – or somewhere to sleep, apart from napping on the chaise longue.
(Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer)