International tourists preferred Minorca to Majorca last month. | ARCHIVO


Just under 1.6 million tourists booked into hotels in the Balearic Islands in September, a fall of 0.25% year-on-year, and they stayed for a total 8.9 million nights which is just over 2% less than in 2018, according to the latest data from the National Statistics Institute.

The decline follows the collapse of the British tour operator, Thomas Cook which caused a crisis in the tourism sector.

The number of overnight stays by foreign tourists fell by 1.24% to just over 1.4 million, which is a drop of more than 47,000 and spent less time in the Balearics. Whereas the number of Spanish travellers who checked into hotels in the Balearics in September this year rose by 8.97% to 164,810 and they also stayed for longer.

The Balearic Islands is still the main destination for foreigners, with 32.2% staying overnight stays compared to 19.6% in Catalonia and 18% in the Canary Islands.

More Spanish tourists were staying in Majorca last month and less in Minorca, but the opposite was true with international tourists who preferred Minorca to Majorca.

Despite the decline in tourists, the Balearic Islands has the highest hotel occupancy at 80.73% a slight fall from 83.02% last year and in the first nine months of the year, overnight stays in Spanish hotels increased by 1.3% compared to September 2018.

1,336 hotels were still open in last month; that’s four less than last year but they did offer 169,946 more rooms than in 2018 although they did cost nearly 5% more, taking the average daily rate to around 106.51 euros.

The number of staff employed to work in hotels in the Balearics in September increased by 1,069 to 60,669.