By Jason Moore

SOMETIMES you simply can´t win. The major British tour operators are more optimistic about next year´s season and believe that the number of British tourists coming to the island next year could increase. Local hoteliers, congratulated them and said that perhaps now was the time for them to raise their prices! They don´t really get the point do they?

The reason why the market to the Balearics is doing well is because hoteliers have kept their prices low and any move to raise them would just result in a fall in bookings. Britain, over the next 12 months, faces severe economic hardship, and it is a minor miracle that bookings to the Balearics have risen. It is also good news for the Balearics, because Turkey now appears to be concentrating on the German market.

Only this week, tourism giant, TUI, announced that Turkey has now become the top market for the Germans, knocking Majorca into second place. The islands need an increase in British tourism otherwise next summer could be exceptionally poor. But price will be key. Until northern European countries start to recover from recession I believe that local hoteliers should keep any price rises on hold. Also, it must be remembered that the Balearics faces competition from cheaper holiday destinations in the eastern Mediterranean which are outside the euro-zone. It is going to be an exceptionally difficult time for the tourist industry in the coming years and the Balearics needs to be both competitive and offer quality. And of course no price rises.

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