This Popular European Island Launches Campaign To Battle Overtourism

This Popular European Island Launches A Campaign To Battle Overtourism

As Mallorca, the popular Spanish resort island, gears up for another year of tourists flocking to its beaches and towns, the challenge of managing overtourism has become a priority for citizens.

Island residents have joined forces to create the campaign Menys Turisme, Més Vida(Less Tourism, More Life) looking to discourage mass tourism and promote a sustainable approach that is good for both locals and visitors.

To achieve these aims, the organization is planning several protests, collective actions and a way to even bring Sant Joan International Airport to a standstill.

This summer, the two main collective actions will focus on: “limiting the number of hire cars” and “uniting various unions to bolster the movement.”

As a tourist, you may be wondering why Mallorcans have turned against tourism.

It didn’t happen overnight. This process has taken over a decade, during which mass tourism has grown uncontrollably.

As per local media outlets, there is a toxic combination between low-cost flights and a proliferation of accommodation platforms such as Airbnb, which have allowed tourists to “colonize” sections of the island that were traditionally residential. 

Some examples include the towns in the Pla region or the Pere Garau neighborhood in Palma, both of which have experienced significant gentrification.

Also, the mistreatment that locals and the island itself get from tourists is not helping to solve the issue.

“Mallorca is amazing. But it’s becoming a nightmare due to the mass tourism that is not taking care of this paradise. As a resident, I feel very sad to see how tourists take advantage of our island and its residents, polluting it and feeling superior to us just because they are tourists. It is something that hurts and fills me with hatred. If you’re not going to take care of my island, don’t come,” said Marta P. in Google.

With “Menys Turisme, Més Vida,” locals look to ban tourists from certain areas and impose additional taxes.

Other EU Destinations Regulating Overtourism

Mallorcans are not alone in this fight. Governments and citizens in other popular European countries have also implemented restrictions to tackle overtourism.

France – Promotion of lesser-known destinations 

France is collaborating with social media influencers to promote alternative destinations so tourists don’t concentrate in the same hotspots.

For its part, Paris increased accommodation and tourism taxes up to 200% to support the upcoming Olympic games.

Amsterdam: Tourist Tax

Amsterdam increased its accommodation tax by 12.5%. It has also banned a number of tourist buses and restricted cruise ship visits.

Venice: New tax for day-trippers

Venice has imposed a new tax for those who want to visit the city for the day and restricted short-term rentals.