WTM 2016: Balearic Islands launch campaign to boost winter visits

WTM 2016: Balearic Islands launch campaign to boost winter visits

The Balearic Islands hope to increase visitor numbers outside the peak season with its new tourism campaign.

The Better in Winter campaign has been launched with the publication of a tourism magazine highlighting the range of events in the Balearic Islands between October and May.

It comes as the Balearic Islands tourist board announces a 9.5% increase in UK visitors for January to September this year compared to last year. The islands – Majorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera – welcomed more than 3.3 million UK visitors in the period, accounting for around a quarter of the total number of tourists to the Balearics.

Despite the increase, much of the tourism remains concentrated around the summer months.

The new campaign, announced at World Travel Market in London, aims to showcase the islands at a quieter time of year and highlight the fact they are more than just a sun and sea destinations.

It focuses on the message that the islands are ‘better in winter’ because the experience is more authentic and peaceful, and highlights the islands’ culture, sport, heritage, art, folk culture, gastronomy, nature, hiking and local festivals. The magazine features a calendar of events on the islands in the winter months.

Gabriel Barcelo, vice president of the Balearic Islands, said: “We are truly proud to showcase our islands during the autumn, winter and spring months.  These are the times of year when our guests can really get under the skin of the destination and experience a truly authentic and heart-warming holiday. These are the months that are most enjoyed by the locals, away from the crowds and offering a more relaxed pace of life. We look forward to welcoming you.”

According to the latest visitor numbers for the island, Menorca saw the biggest growth out of the UK from January to September with more than 486,000 British visitors – a rise of 10.3% year on year.

Majorca, the largest Balearic island, welcomed 2.1 million British tourists, an increase of 9.9%, in the same period, while more than 778,000 British visitors went to Ibiza and Formentera, an increase of 8.1%.

For the same period, in terms of airport departures, London was the main UK outbound city to all the islands followed by Manchester and then East Midlands, in the case of Menorca and Ibiza, and Birmingham, in the case of Marjorca.

Passenger numbers out of Birmingham airport to Marjorca increased by 40.9% year on year.

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