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Palma.—Initially, the majority of hotels were going to remain closed until the middle of next month or even the beginning of May which the Managing Director of Monarch Travel, Hugh Monarch, said he fully understood. “The trouble this year is that with Easter coming so early, there is then a great trough which the hoteliers have to fill until the season really gets underway in early May. That said, here in the UK we've seen very healthy bookings since before Christmas and they go all the way through from mid-April until October so those that do open for Easter should fair quite well.” Confidence
The only problem is that thousands of Britons are either skiing or have gone in search of guaranteed winter sun this time of year which is why, coupled with the recession which is continuing to hit domestic tourism more than foreign tourism, fewer hotels will be open for Easter than last year.

However, considering a record number of hotels closed up for the winter, the fact that hotels are open early does send a message of confidence to the over all holiday market.

And, the Balearic tourist industry was given an extra boost at the ITB travel fair in Berlin with reports that during the last quarter of last year, the number of German tourists which came to the Balearics rose by 13 percent.

But, the question the Balearic delegation will want to find answers to in Berlin this week is if that increase is going to continue throughout this year amidst fears that the German holiday market has stagnated slightly.