Traffic on the Andratx-Palma motorway. | Alejandro Sepúlveda

Traffic data from the Council of Mallorca point to a 14.7% year-on-year increase in the number of vehicles on the Andratx-Palma MA-1. Between January to July last year there were some eleven million vehicles. For the same seven months of 2023 there were 12.6 million.

The volume of traffic is such that it is said that it can take up to 90 minutes to do the journey between Andratx and Palma, whereas it should be more like 35 minutes, and that an alternative route - the old Palmanova road - has become busier. Tailbacks can be as long as fifteen kilometres.

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Is this a case of greater traffic saturation because of tourism? Up to a point it is, though month-by-month figures indicate that the largest percentage increase was in January - 79.7%, 827,151 vehicles, 366,915 more than in 2022.

In February there were 1,484,300 vehicles (228,430 more, 18.2%); March, 1,701,179 (252,113 more, 17.4%); April, 2,001,938 (327,583 more, 19.6%). For May to July, the increases were all below ten per cent, with the lowest having been July - 4.84%, 2,290,201 vehicles, 105,879 more than in 2022.