One million fewer tourists coming to our shores next season because of the increase in the rate of the tourist tax. This is what local hoteliers are alleging at the moment and I do not want to question their figures but it does sound rather incredible that they can give numbers when most package holidays for summer 2018 are still unsold. Now of course the rise in the tourist tax is a major concern but at the end of the day we are talking pennies not pounds. Turkey, as I have said in this space all week, is a concern for the Balearics because it is far cheaper but I sincerely doubt that it will have a major impact.
What local politicians are saying at the moment is that the local tourist industry can't grow any further during the summer because there is simply not enough space. In other words the Balearics has reached almost its full capacity during the peak months, so really no one wants even more summer tourists. This is why the local government is trying to grow low-season tourism. The hoteliers believe that the new rise in the tourist tax will eat into their competitive edge and push tourists away to cheaper holiday destinations. But it must be said that the tax is paid directly by all those who stay in hotels and really it does not affect hoteliers or their competitive edge as it is paid on arrival. One million tourists is a lot of tourists and while I suspect that tourism will fall next season, I do not think there is a need for the alarm bells to start ringing.
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