0

The national government, still of course in "acting" mode, is once more considering certain limits to the residents' discount for air travel between the Balearics and the mainland. At present, this is 50% on all routes regardless of the cost of the flight.

The Aviba association of Balearic travel agencies is saying that a month or so ago it received notification from the ministry for development (responsible for air transport) as to government plans. These, the association believes, would be prejudicial to Balearic residents were they to be approved.

Specifically, there is a proposal to limit the discount to group travel and to businesses which have frequent fliers. There is a further proposal that there should be a maximum value per flight that will be subject to the discount. This was proposed once before - at the end of 2012 - but in the end it fell through.

The ministry is now looking at this again. It would establish an average price for each route, and it would be this average to which the 50% would apply. So, if the average price of the Palma-Madrid route is 200 euros, the discount would bring the cost to the traveller down to 100 euros. But if, for instance, this same route had to be travelled at short notice and the actual price had shot up to 500 euros, the traveller would end up paying 400 euros.

Aviba has been in contact with the regional government, which says that it has received no such notification from the ministry. The Balearic government adds that it cannot understand, if this were the case, why an acting government would take such a decision. It is seeking some clarification from the ministry.

With Congress having been dissolved ahead of the June election, any decision would be more complicated, so it is unlikely that there will be one. Nevertheless, both the regional government and Aviba are wondering why these proposals were raised only a month ago when a new election seemed inevitable.