Eimersaufen, Ordenanza Civica, Playa de Palma


Palma.—The Balearic Minister for Tourism, Jaime Martinez, said yesterday that, based on last month’s tourism figures, the Balearics can, "in principal" look ahead to a good tourist season.

However, sources in the UK travel industry claim that may be wishful thinking and figures released in Spain yesterday prove just that. Looking at the global picture, Spain’s tourism boom continued during the first four months of this year, with the country receiving 15.3 million international visitors, up 9.2 percent on the same period last year.

The country received around 1.3 million more foreign visitors more from January to April 2014 than in the same period last year, the figures from Spanish government agency Frontur show.

According to the report, the 3.1 million tourists from the UK enjoyed a 20.3 percent share of the overall market with the number of visitors up 6.6 percent on last year, but where are they going.

Andalusia saw a 10 percent year-on-year rise in foreign tourism, while Valencia chalked up a 9 percent increase and Madrid saw a 5 percent boost.

But, here in the Balearics, visitor numbers slipped 6.8 percent to 1.1 million during the first four months of this year.

In fact, the number of holiday makers coming to the Balearics during the first quarter dropped consecutively on a monthly basis, only was an increase of ten percent recorded last month because Easter fell later than usual this year.

However, with Majorca proving the most popular destination in the UK this bank Holiday weekend, resorts should be busier, but then there will be another drop off in business which some UK travel industry experts have warned that the UK market may not pick up again until mid-July or the end of the World Cup.

"The market in the UK remains very soft with hardly any strength or enthusiasm showing at all. I think hoteliers are waking up to the fact that it is going to be a very late very late market indeed judging by the late offer that are coming through on a regular basis. Balearics year on year is still down by 1% with Minorca -6% Ibiza +3% and Majorca -1%.

"Sales in the market last week for Majorca were -9% year on year, so no signs as yet of any revival as yet," the Bulletin was told.