THE beginning of the tourist season in the Balearic Islands has not been great, say the Presidents of the Majorcan, Minorcan and Ibizan Hotel Federations; Pere Cañellas, Ana Ventura and Pere Matutes. Tourist figures have been “weak” throughout the Balearic Islands, although it must be stated that the figures are similar to those registered last year in May. These pessimistic statements were made at a press conference where Joan Flaquer, Minister for Tourism, talked about the development of the online hotel reservation system by Avanthotel. The start of the tourist season has been different in terms of location in Majorca, said the President of the Majorcan Hotel Federation, Cañellas. In this way, the north east has experienced the weak figures, as this area heavily relies on the arrival of German familes. However, areas like Playa de Palma, Peguera, Palmanova and Magalluf have recieved a high number of tourists in the hotels.
After six months of being closed, the hotels naturally find it difficult to attract lots of tourists, however those hotels that offer special products seem to overcome these problems. May “is not going to be a great month, but it is going to be similar to last year, with maybe a slight increase in tourist numbers”, said Cañellas.
In spite of the doom abd gloom, Cañellas thinks “that it will pick up” throughout the summer “with the help from other markets”. For this reason “we are more optimistic”, he added. The hotels in Ibiza are working “much better” than the apartments and villas, said the President of the Minorcan Hotel Federation, Ventura.
With regards to Ibiza and Formentera, the tourist figures staying in hotels are similar to last year's, said the President of the Ibizan Hotel Federation, Pere Matutes. Although this year there has been more Spanish tourists, and this it seems is thanks to the improvements in maritime transport, which are now “more comfortable and quicker”. Last year more than 400'000 people came to Ibiza by boat.
Flights down
DURING April the number of passengers using Palma airport decreased by 1.07 percent if compared to 2004 statistics.
In total 1.4 million passengers used Palma airport in April. The decrease is due to the lower number of British people coming to the island, which decreased by 7.59 percent. In addition there was a stagnation in terms if the number of Spanish tourists at the airport. On the other hand, there was 4.18 percent more German passengers using the Palma airport during April, according to information by the Balearic Airport Authorities (AENA). This same organisation registered a 4 percent decrease in the number of flights, which was only 13'248 flights during April.
As is expected, the main people to pass through Palma airports doors were Germans, Spanish and British (in that order).
Whilst, the airlines who managed these flights were primarily Air Berlin, Air Europa, Iberia, Condor, Hapag lloyd, Spanair, Easy jet, Air Nostrum and Hapag Lloyd Express (in that order). The number of freight planes increased by 15.12 percent.