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Hoteliers have gloomy prediction for Mallorca occupancy next summer 

Hoteliers in Mallorca are worried about losing up to one million holidaymakers next summer due to the doubling of the tourist tax and the “bounce back” factor from competing markets.

The dire prediction comes from the Hotel Federation of Mallorca which had already warned the Balearic Government against slapping a charge of up to four euros a night for visitors to the island.

Now, they say the situation looks even more gloomy because of the recovery of other summer destinations in the Med such as Turkey, Egypt and Tunisia and have accused the government of not being “realistic”.

They fear people will be put off choosing not only Mallorca but the other Balearic islands of Ibiza and Formentera too in favour of cheaper options.

Federation president Gabriel Llobera told the Spanish press during the World Travel Market in London: “The ecotax will be harmful!”

He added: “Mallorca and the rest of the Islands will lose competitiveness as a holiday destination with respect to Turkey, Egypt or Tunisia, which will devalue their currencies to be much more attractive for German and British tourism. “

The tourist tax was strongly opposed by hoteliers when reintroduced in the Balearics this year but there was an uproar when the government decided to double it for the summer of 2018.

The Federation claims tourists will boycott the islands rather than pay an average of three euros a night.

Guests staying in hotels, city hotels, five-star apartment hotels, five-star luxury and four-star superiors will pay four euros per day; those of four stars and three stars superior, three euros; those of one, two and three stars, two euros.

As for tourist apartments, holidaymakers staying in four-keys and four upper keys will pay four euros per day; three keys upper, three euros; one, two and three keys, two euros.

In rural hotels, it will be two euros per day; in hostels, hostels residences, pensions, inns, tourist camps and campsites, as well as shelters , it will be two euros.

As predicted, the Government plans to start charging the tourist tax to all cruise ships that stop at a port in the Balearic Islands regardless of the berth time – up to now it was only charged after 12 hours. The fee will be two euros and is estimated to generate revenue of about 1.8 million euros.

The tourist tax is not being doubled for the low season of November to April.

The Balearic Government has dismissed the hoteliers’ fears, saying the ecotax will not have a negative impact on visitor numbers to the islands and would still be “the lowest in Europe” compared to Brussels (average cost of eight euros), Florence (five euros ) and Amsterdam (three euros).

Tourist spending has so far not been affected, with latest figures suggesting there had been an six per cent increase in daily spending per person during the second quarter of this year.

The government also says it is not numbers which count but the amount tourists spend.