Tourists are starting to return to Turkey and Egypt and Greece is doing exceptionally well, travel giant Thomas Cook said in a statement yesterday. I sincerely hope that the Balearic tourist industry is taking note. Thomas Cook's rival, TUI, has said that German families were looking to Turkey as a value for money holiday destination.

Now, obviously there are still some security fears over resorts in north Africa and the eastern Mediterranean but the Balearics is facing competition again. And in most cases it is cheap competition, because prices are usually lower in these competing resorts. Local hoteliers have been busy putting up their prices over the last few months, because they basically believed that Spain had a monopoly. This is no longer the case. Tourists are going elsewhere. So the Balearics has to be careful; it must offer value for money and it also most remember that the majority of tourists who come here are on a budget.

Now, no one doubts that the Balearics is one of the best places in the world for a holiday but price in the travel industry is key. This is not the time for a major rise in holiday costs. The controversial tourist tax, introduced last summer, might also cause problems this year. Thankfully the Balearic government decided against raising the cost of the surcharge. Majorca has a lot to offer a visiting tourists but it can't just sit back and expect tourists to come here year after year. There is competition again and the islands should be on their guard.

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