Cruise ship passengers are helping to keep certain excursions popular.

31-03-2016Toni Escobar

Travel agencies in the Balearics are reporting a 40% decrease in the sale of tourist excursions over the last four years - which amounts to 800,000 fewer people.

Miguel Morales is the president of the Aviba excursions' commission (Aviba being the travel agencies' association). He says that sales had been falling across the Balearics but that there was an acceleration from 2011. This has been mainly attributed to the impact of all-inclusive hotels.

Such a decline has an obvious knock-on effect on other sectors, such as transport. Rafael Roig of the federation of transport operators says that it has had a negative impact because of a lowering in the number of excursions - both those in the day and those in the evening. Excursions' income to coach companies has thus gone down.

Aviba also suggests that tourists' low spending power has had an influence. Morales points out that this is a factor, as also is the fact that excursions are being sold with considerably reduced prices. An example is a trip to Valldemossa which no longer includes the price of entrance to the Charterhouse. Previously, this would not have been offered.

The association claims that one out of three tourists coming to Majorca now buys an excursion: a lower ratio than used to be the case. In the years of tourism "bonanza" the total sales (day and evening) would have been in the region of two million. "Those figures are never going to return," the association maintains. Each of the main tourism markets (UK, Germany, Sweden and so on) are registering up to 15% annual decreases. "This is especially so in Majorca because of a high level of repeat visitor who opts instead to hire a car."

The excursions which still have high levels of sales are the traditionally popular ones: the caves, such as Drach, the island tour (Palma-Soller-Sa Calobra), Formentor and boat trips. Ones in the evenings have suffered more than those in the day, but Son Amar, for instance, continues to be popular. If there is one excursion that has performed positively in the past three years, though, it is the Palma sightseeing bus trip, which has been helped by the high numbers of cruise passengers.


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Steve / Hace over 5 years

Yes, this is another area suffering as a result of the hoteliers actions. All they worry about is getting millions in subsidies from the taxpayers funds in order to update their dilapidated businesses, then after passing round the brown envelopes, move the profits off to the caribbean.

Other businesses sheduled to close are car rentals and money exchange shops, along with so many bars and restaurants.

Thank heavens for the private rental sector, they're doing their best to save the island.

Finally tourist numbers will reduce as the local areas become ghost towns.