By Humphrey Carter
MAJORCA is the fourth most popular destination for Spaniards spending this long bank holiday weekend away.
Topping the list are Tenerife, Lanzarote and Gran Canaria for the winter sun hunters with Palma coming fourth followed by Turkey, Prague, London, Paris, Morocco, Egypt and Tunisia.

Palma was yesterday the fourth busiest airport in Spain handling some 321 flights and 40'000 passengers, much more than usual.
In fact, Palma's Son Sant Joan airport will be handling nearly 30 percent more passengers and air traffic over the “Constitución” bank holiday than last year.

Between now and Thursday, the airport will handle the best part of 200'000 passengers and despite the increase in domestic tourism, a winter boom in British holidaymakers has also been reported by the airport authority.

But not only is December shaping up to be a good month for Son Sant Joan and winter tourism, last month was also much busier than November 2003.
The airport reported 878'700 passengers, nearly 41'000 more than in November last year and Son Sant Joan is expecting to hit the 20 milion passenger mark by the end of this year.

However, hoteliers are still complaining about low occupancy and are blaming the poor long range bank holiday weather forecast.
Agro tourism hotels are continuing to prove popular in the Balearics and many visitors coming from the UK and Germany are either holiday home owners, independent travellers or staying with friends.

The Balearic agro tourism sector is performing better than anywhere else in Spain.
Despite the north of the country being a popular agro tourism destination, particularly with the British taking their cars across to Bilbao on the ferry, occupancy in the Balearics last month was 40 percent compared to 27 in the Basque Country and 26 percent in the Canary Islands.

The national average occupancy level was 20 percent, way below the Balearics.
Local hoteliers claim that the bulk of their clients this weekend are residents cashing in on the bank holiday deals many of the hotels which have decided to remain open this winter have been offering to boost business.

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