DEAR SIR

YOUR paper is continually printing articles about the lack of tourists, what do you expect? For Brits fighting the Euro things are very expensive especially eating in restaurants, when we first came here 20 years ago I could save money from my housekeeping then in came the euro and 125 pesetas became 1.25 euros nearly double. We think now before even going out for a coffee. Here in Palmanova the bus service is a mess, when we were here in January we waited 40-50mins then 2 or even 3 buses came at the same time then another 40-50 min wait for the next 2 or 3 to come. Now there are more buses in an hour but at busy times due to the cheap Spanish pensioner holidays buses are packed with people standing like sardines in a tin. A wonderful situation for the pickpockets. Sometimes by the time the bus reaches our stop it is full and passes by. By June and during the summer it is best to forget catching a bus. The prices here have risen that it now costs 2 of us over £10 return to go to Palma.

Although we are pensioners and own an apartment here we are not residents and as such our free bus passes were taken away from us last year as the Calvia council decided we were not entitled to them now although we pay as much council tax etc. as residents. As we are not residents we are also not tourists as we are not allowed to join in the Calvia winter programme organised as entertainment for winter visitors. As far as I know only 1 hotel was open this winter here in Palmanova, not many shops, restaurants or bars were open the whole place looked most uninviting and drab. No wonder people who for years have been coming for 3 months to escape the British cold winters are now saying they will not be returning. Friends that have apartments here but live in Scotland, Wales and some parts of England cannot even get flights out here in the winter. The forthcoming strikes announced will also stop people booking holidays here, my son had to stay an extra week and lose a weeks work due to the air traffic controllers strike in August, so he will not be returning. Throughout the year many hotels are now doing all inclusive so their guests are not spending money in restaurants but apartment owners spend money by going out for meals or in the supermarkets and local shops. So especially in the winter the circle of no flights…. no hotels open……shops closed, cafes closed… a reduced winter programme for people who are here…reduced bus service then people will continue to ignore Majorca as a winter escape and for summer holidays and more apartment owners will be selling up and taking our money elsewhere. We love Majorca but it is nowhere as good as it used to be and it may soon be time to pack up and leave.

Yours truly,

Cynthia Meager
Palmanova

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