Less than one percent of britons consider Majorca dream destinationIf money were not an object, less than one percent of UK package holidaymakers would visit Majorca. With British high streets about to become the scene of package holiday price wars with some of the small tour operators claiming that the market leaders and making pre-Christmas moves to undercut them and dominate the market ahead of next summer, the Balearics, has a very competitive six months ahead. While the revival of Eastern Mediterranean holiday destinations have been partially blamed for a shift in the tourist industry this year, the local government and tourism authorities need to take off their blinkers and put the Balearics in the global picture. In 1998, one percent of UK holidaymakers said they would visit Majorca if money was not an object, this year less than one percent would come here while 22 percent would go to Australia and other long haul destinations. Head of corporate affairs for ABTA, Keith Betton, told the Bulletin three years ago that long haul holidays would eventually offer better value for money than short haul and the proof is in the pudding. 21 percent of UK holidaymakers want to take a trip to Australia, followed by 14 percent to the United States and other top destinations include New Zealand, Canada, the Maldives, and the West Indies. On the short haul market, most people are considering Italy or even mainland Spain. The survey has revealed that, less than one percent would come to Majorca or go to the Canaries if they could afford to go elsewhere and 68 percent said that they will visit their dream destination. ABTA says that Australia will be at the front of the minds of many British holidaymakers and that it is a tribute to the value for money offered by the UK travel industry that such a high proportion of respondents to the survey believe that their dream holiday is a real possibility in their future plans. The key to the whole market is providing value for money but since January, hotel prices in the Balearics have risen by 19.5 percent, compared to an increase of under half, 7.3 percent on the mainland, which is proving increasingly more popular with British holidaymakers than the islands.
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