Palma.—After a Winter and Spring of positive market forecasts for the Spanish and Balearic tourist industries, it appears that the predictions are true and that the season, thanks to a late Easter and no volcanic ash cloud, has got off to a flying start across the country.

Spanish Airport and Air Traffic Control authority, AENA, yesterday reported that Balearic airports handled 23.5 percent more passengers last month than during April of last year while at a national level, Spanish airports experienced the sharpest monthly increase in passengers for the past decade of just over ten percent.

But, apart from Spain's two main airports in Madrid and Barcelona, it has been the Balearics where passenger figures have been rising sharply since the beginning of the year.

Last month, Palma handled 23.6 percent more passengers, Ibiza posted a record increase of 32.9 percent while Minorca also posted a rise, albeit 4.9 percent.

And Minorca, was the only local airport to have suffered a slight monthly decrease in air traffic.
To the contrary, Palma's Son San Joan handled ten percent more aircraft last month and Ibiza, an extra 8.8 percent.
Palma airport was therefore the country's third busiest airport last month and during the first four months of the year, the number of passengers handled by Son San Joan has risen b y 4.5 percent in comparison to last year.

Less planes
Ironically, while there has been an increase in passengers in Palma since the start of the year, the number of flights was actually down by 0.7 percent, but that will come as no surprise to visitors from the United Kingdom as they were faced with another nightmare scenario of a shortage of flights again over the winter.

However, it appears that there was a winter demand for flights and people were catching which ever flights were available to both Majorca and Ibiza which registered a 17.7 percent increase in passengers during the first four months of the year.

So, perhaps winter tourism can work providing flights are operating.
And, it was not only Spanish and Balearics airports which experienced significant increase in passenger traffic last month.
As forecast, tens of thousands of Britons made the most of the Royal Wedding bank Holiday, and managed to take two weeks off and grab a holiday.
Yesterday all of the UK's main airports posted sharp rises in outbound traffic with BAA's six airports handling 9.1 million passengers last month, with Heathrow and Edinburgh enjoying their busiest Aprils in their history.

And this trend is expected to continue throughout the summer.