Anti-tourism campaigners in Majorca call for two-euro-a-day tourist tax for cruise ship passengers to be raised to FIVE – and a two-liners-a-day limit in Palma
- Cruise passengers already pay up to two euros to enter Palma when ships dock
- But campaigners want to increase this in a bid to limit the number of visitors
- About two million cruise ship passengers are expected in the Balearics this year
- Local residents say they put too much pressure on services and the environment
Anti-tourism campaigners in Majorca are demanding cruise ship passengers coming on to the island be hit with a five-euro-a-day tourist tax.
And they also want the number of ships docking in the capital Palma to be limited to just two per day.
The so-called sustainable tourism tax is already causing controversy after the Balearic government increased it from May 1 until October 31 with the highest rate of four euros (£3.50) a night being charged to holidaymakers in five-star accommodation.
Anti-tourism campaigners in Palma, Majorca, protest against large cruise ships coming into the harbour
For the first time, cruise liner passengers also have to pay if they stay for more than 12 hours.
The fee should be one or two euros a night depending on the season.
But campaigners want the special flat rate of five euros (£4.40) in a bid to act as a deterrent.
About two million cruise ship passengers are expected in the Balearics this year but ecologists and residents of Palma want to see this substantially reduced to relieve the pressure both on the environment and mass tourism.
They say on one day alone, there were seven cruise ship arrivals at the capital’s port, bringing in around 5,000 people.
Two million cruise ship passengers are expected in the Balearics this year and campaigners say they should be charged a five-euro-a-day tourist tax to enter the island
The call for action is being led by the platform ‘ Fins Aquí Hem Arribat’, the Federation of Residents’ Associations of Palma and the Friends of the Earth who have slammed the impact on resources and the pressures put on the city.
They want the Balearic government to apply a tourism tax at a level that reflects ‘pollution caused by cruise liners’, which they suggest is five euros a day.
They also want an area of the Mediterranean zoned off as a ‘Pollutant-Emitting Controlled Emission Zone (ECA)’ as already exists in the Baltic Sea, the North Sea and the English Channel.
Campaigners claim that on one day alone, there were seven cruise ship arrivals at the capital’s port, bringing in around 5,000 people
This would mean limiting and fining ships for emissions and contravening air quality regulations.
In addition, the campaigners are demanding ‘clear and transparent’ information in relation to emissions, water and waste from cruise ships when they are moored in the port.
The number of cruise liners in Balearic Island ports has grown in the first quarter of the year by 134.6 per cent, reaching 174,756 tourists, according to Spain’s Port Authority.
In the first three months of the year 45 cruises arrived in the Balearics, 80 per cent more than in the first quarter of last year.
During the first quarter of the year, all the port authorities with the highest cruise liner traffic experienced strong growth, with the exception of Valencia, which showed a decline in the influx of these types of passengers.
Palma has already seen protests at its port from mass tourism objectors, most recently when the world’s biggest cruise liner Symphony of the Seas came into dock.
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