The Balearic tourism delegation to the ITB trade fair in Berlin returned home today relatively unscathed and confident that the islands would have a record holiday season. There are three key tourism fairs for the Balearics: the ITB fair in Berlin, the World Travel Market in London and Fitur in Madrid. At all three fairs there has been good news for the Balearics and the tourist tax has failed to make the headlines. The Balearic government has been lucky. If the British or German tourist industry had made a fuss about the tax the local government would have been in big trouble. In fact, the last time a Balearic government attempted to introduce a tax of this type the move was thwarted by the hoteliers with the support of the big tour firms. On this occasion it appears that the international travel industry is not too concerned over the surcharge which the government wants to introduce from 1 June. Everything appears to be working in the Balearics' favour. The fact that the islands are considered a safe haven destination has obviously helped as a result of all the turmoil in north Africa and to a lesser extent the eastern Mediterranean. So it could be said that the Balearic government has got lucky. At the moment the tourist tax is on course for an introduction with few problems but I suspect that there will still be a bumpy ride ahead. At the moment everything appears to be going exactly to plan for the Balearic government.

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Ron / Hace over 2 years

They have got away with it by Sra. Armengol saying " bookings already contracted for this year will in no way be affected" - (Ultima Hora yesterday - my best interpretation!) I take it that this exemption will also apply to all villa/apartment bookings already made. Otherwise discrimination in favour of the hoteliers musn't be accepted.

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