Spain´s Balearic Islands to cap visitor arrivals saying its about quality not quantity

Mallorca airport arrivals - Image Zixia /

The Balearic Government has set a ceiling of 16.5 million tourists annually as it takes steps to cap the number of visitor arrivals.

Making the announcement on Tuesday, February 7 Francina Armengol said that the islands aren´t looking to reduce the number of visitors but that they would not allow even one more tourist than the cap set.

The minister of tourism confirmed recent statements saying that it is about quality over quantity and that the tourism sector supports that view. More specifically the islands he said, are looking to even the number of visitors out during the year and to encourage them to visit other areas and attractions rather than all heading to the same towns and cities.

But the decision has faced criticism from some like travel expert Antoni Riera who told Preferente that the policy lacks rigour and that restricting the number is not an easy task. Recognising the impact he said a more robust plan was needed as the number of tourist arrivals is not an exact number, and that you cannot just divert a flight because you have reached the cap.

He adds that no specifics have been given by the government and in particular which destinations will be affected. He also says there appear to be no plans as to how to deal with demand, which is largely out of their control.

Initial reports were that the Balearic Government was looking to reduce the number of arrivals, but the impact on the economy and jobs was said to be too great.

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Written by

Peter McLaren-Kennedy

Originally from South Africa, Peter is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at