The Fitur fair in January 2022. | P. Verger

At the Fitur international tourism fair in Madrid, which is being officially opened by King Felipe and Queen Letizia on Wednesday morning, the Balearics will be seeking to further consolidate a position in the Spanish tourism market, which proved to be such a success in 2022.

Balearic government and island council representatives will be having numerous meetings with Spanish tour operators and airlines in looking to build on growth last year. While international passenger numbers at Palma Son Sant Joan Airport were down in 2022 compared with pre-pandemic 2019, Spanish numbers were up five per cent. One of the great surprises of last year was that there were more Spanish tourists in August than either British or German.

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The dip in international passengers was largely because of decreased British and German tourism, but other markets registered increases. The number of French passengers in Palma was up 27%, while the Italian number rose 37%.