Passenger numbers at Palma in the low season have increased notably. | Teresa Ayuga

As signalled in the Bulletin almost two weeks ago, the airports authority Aena has confirmed that passenger numbers at Palma's Son Sant Joan airport last year broke the 29 million barrier for the first time. There were 29,081,000 in total (arrivals and departures), a four per cent increase.

Aena notes that this increase was principally due to growth of 12% over winter months, while in high summer there was a rise of just one per cent.

Just over 22 million of the passengers travelled to and from foreign airports. There was a five per cent increase in German traffic - to 9.86 million - while UK traffic fell by four per cent to 5.4 million. The highest percentage rise was 36.3% by Austrian traffic (578,831 passengers).

There was a 5.5% rise in the number of flights. Of a total of 220,329 arrivals and departures, 150,604 were international, an increase of 4.7%. Flights to and from other parts of Spain went up almost eight per cent.

In December there were 972,614 passengers, up 20.7% compared with December 2017. There were more national passengers (540,009) than foreign. German passenger numbers were 266,264, an increase of 60%. UK passengers went up 13% to 59,102. The number of flights rose by 23% to 9,144.