According to the National Statistics Institute's report for October hotel performance, there were over one million guests in Balearic hotels during the month. This is the first time that the million mark has been passed for October. The total of 1,008,443 comprised almost 875,000 foreign visitors.
Moreover, when it came to overnight stays by foreign visitors, 26.6% of the Spanish total was in the Balearics. This was an increase of almost four per cent compared with October 2016 and placed the Balearics just ahead of the Canaries with 26%. Catalonia, with 15.5%, was third. Unlike the Balearics and the Canaries, there was a fall in Catalonia of just under three per cent, suggesting that events in that region are having a detrimental impact on its tourism.
In terms of actual hotel occupancy, the Canary Islands were the national leader with 80%. The 66.9% occupancy in the Balearics (the second highest) was an improvement over last year, while employment in Balearic hotels rose by 4,000 in October (compared with 2016) and hotel prices went up by almost eleven per cent.
In general terms, it has to be said that this was a strong performance. For the Balearic government, the figures might be taken as evidence of a lengthening of the season and of its wish for tourists to be diverted away from the peak months of the summer. On the other hand, it may mean nothing of the sort; just a continuing high demand for the Balearics in a month which is after all classified as being part of the main tourism season. It may just also be that the holiday rentals legislation has worked to the hotels' advantage. As important will be what these figures might look like in a year's time.
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