Warning of further problems at Palma airport this summer. | Majorca Daily Bulletin reporter

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The Exceltur tourism alliance expects “major chaos” at airports this summer, especially at those with the largest influx of British tourists and at Madrid-Barajas airport, if the number of passport control staff is not increased.

The executive vice-president of Exceltur, José Luis Zoreda, singled out the airports of Malaga, Mallorca, the two in Tenerife and Gran Canaria as those which are expected to have the greatest problems.

Zoreda said that in no case are the problems due to mismanagement on the part of the airport authority Aena and urged the Ministry of Interior to ensure that the main tourist airports and Madrid-Barajas have the necessary police forces to facilitate passport control for passengers arriving from non-Schengen countries, especially those from the United Kingdom, the main source market for tourists to Spain.

He highlighted the “great professionalism” in the management of the large volume of tourists that Spain receives annually, “unlike other European airports, which can be currently described as chaotic.”

The lack of staff needed after Covid to deal with the sudden surge in passengers is compounded by management problems in the services they provide to both airlines and passengers, in addition to those arising from the Ryanair and easyJet strikes, which are causing “significant problems and inconvenience” to tourists who want to fly to Spain.

In the meantime, Which? says it has reported easyJet to the Civil Aviation Authority, asking the regulator to investigate the airline’s treatment of passengers who have their flights cancelled.

The consumer watchdog said it had heard from passengers who were not told about their legal right to hundreds of pounds in compensation and the chance to be re-routed with other airlines.

Some families were left to sleep on the airport floor or buy expensive new flights home after their original plans were cancelled, leaving them feeling “abandoned”, Which? said.