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News in Mallorca during the week


The inhabitants of Palma are use private cars more than before the pandemic, indicates a national survey carried out by the Mobility Forum. 73% of people in Palma now opt for the car, compared to 62% in 2019. This places the Balearic capital in third place for car use, behind Toledo with 84% and Badajoz with 77%. In Madrid (55%) and Barcelona (40%) car use is much lower, but this may reflect the wider supply of alternative transport. Only 2% of Palma residents surveyed say they regularly use public transport.

Your Six a Day

There’s hardly any media on the planet that hasn’t covered the ‘furious’ Brits vacationer Jason Walker who has been ‘upset’ by the Balearics’ ‘new’ all-inclusive six-drinks-a-day rule. He had flown to Mallorca to celebrate his cousin’s birthday and although he thought he could eat and drink as much as he wanted, he was ‘angry’ to find there were limits on alcohol consumption. In 2020, in an attempt to clamp down on excessive tourism and anti-social behavior, the Balearic government imposed limits in certain sensitive areas of Playa de Palma, Magalluf and San Antonio in Ibiza. This included a maximum of six all-inclusive alcoholic drinks per person per day – three during lunch and three during dinner. Other measures banned happy hours, pub crawls and the sale of alcohol in stores between 9:30 p.m. and 8 a.m. Travel agents and airlines are hastily issuing statements to remind their customers of the rules.

Dry menu of the day

To add insult to injury, it was whispered that the Department of Health was about to crack down on inclusion of alcohol in the sacred menu del día. The Inter-Territorial Board of Health met last week to endorse the Cardiovascular Health Strategy (ESCAV) and one of the ideas being discussed was the removal of wine and beer from fixed price restaurant menus. Some media made headlines about the “alcohol ban”, prompting immediate public outrage. The ministry quickly responded saying: ‘We reiterate that this is false information that bars and restaurants are going to be forced not to offer wine or beers on their menus… catering establishments should promote the scheme Mediterranean as a model of heart-healthy eating”. Nevertheless, the Ministry of Health has pointed out that cardiovascular diseases are: “the main cause of death and the second cause of hospitalization” in Spain, despite the fact that it has reached one of the highest life expectancies. in the world.

Right to vote

Last Thursday activists celebrated British expats lifetime right to vote in British parliamentary elections. Previously, expats were not allowed to vote if they had lived outside the UK for more than 15 years. The law would now be changed to allow Britons to vote in the constituency where they last appeared on the electoral roll, or where they previously resided. It’s a victory for the many expats who still have assets, family and pay tax in the UK and want to have a say in politics ‘at home’. The 15-year rule was introduced under the Labor government of Tony Blair and repeatedly challenged on the simple grounds that it was a violation of human rights for Britons living abroad.

Imprisoned Boris

Friday, Boris Becker was slapped with two years and six months in prison after being found guilty of four counts under the Insolvency Act. Speaking at Southwark Crown Court, sentencing judge Deborah Taylor noted that the 54-year-old former tennis player had shown no remorse or accepted his guilt. With good behavior, Boris can serve half his sentence on probation.

Hasta Luego McManamans

Also on Friday we read that England, Liverpool, Manchester City and Real Madrid legend, Steve McManaman, was selling his house in Majorca. Steve and his wife Victoria, whom he married at Palma Cathedral in 2002, bought Mallorca’s Beverly Hills Son Vida in 2000 but sadly fell in love with the island. After enjoying years of quiet anonymity and uninterrupted views of the Bay of Palma, they feel that overbuilding has shattered their peace, privacy and views. Victoria said: “It was not a decision we took lightly. We have had such a wonderful time here…it will leave a huge void in our lives”.

NATO exercise

NATO ships are currently participating in Exercise ESP MINEX 22 in Balearic waters. The fleet of 14 ships, one helicopter and more than 700 soldiers, hails from nine countries and includes nine Spanish navy ships, two French, one Italian, one Greek and one German, as well as Belgian teams. , the United States, Romania and Latvia. The objective is to detect and deactivate simulated mines around the ports of the Balearic Islands using unmanned underwater vehicles (UUV) and diving units specialized in mine warfare, mine countermeasures and demining diving. The routine exercise ends on Friday.

British Furore driving license

The deadline for UK citizens to drive Spain on their UK license came and went at midnight on Saturday April 30. This meant that Britons who had been resident in Spain for more than six months were banned from driving with now invalid UK-issued licenses. The rule does not apply to vacationers. The UK government advised people to switch to a Spanish license throughout the transition period, but many failed to make the switch and are now facing theory and practical tests. The first can be taken in English, but the practice can only be conducted in Spanish. Spain is the ninth most expensive country in the world to obtain a driver’s license – plus the cost of the necessary language lessons. There are also long waiting lists at driving schools, exacerbated by the backlog of COVID-19. In the meantime, the UK government continues to urge its Spanish counterpart to come up with interim measures allowing UK residents to switch directly from a UK license to a Spanish license without testing. The UK already has similar agreements in place with 24 other EU countries.

Mallorca 312

More … than 8,000 cyclists participated in this year’s Mallorca 312, each pedaling one of three distances: 167 km, 225 km or 312 km. Among them were famous faces from the world of professional cycling, such as Italian Ivan ‘The Terrible’ Basso, Irish legend Sean Kelly, Spaniard Alberto Contador, two-time Tour de France winner, and the record-breaking five-time Tour de France winner. Tour de France. Spaniard Miguel Indurain. Belgian cyclist Olivier Godfroid was the fastest cyclist to complete Saturday’s long course in 09:01:10, while the winner was Dutch Joke van Wijk in 10:35:55.

La Liga winners are decided

Saturday afternoon, Real Madrid have secured their 35th La Liga title with a resounding 4-0 win over Espanyol. Madrid hold the record for most titles, nine more than Barcelona and 24 more than last season’s champions Atlético Madrid. At the other end of the table, Real Mallorca will fight for their top-flight life at home to Granada on Saturday. The Club are doing all they can to excite the Son Moix crowd, handing out free pre-match paella and 10,000 flags to supporters when they arrive at the stadium for the 2pm kick-off. Tickets are also available at reduced prices. Mallorca’s last three games are against Sevilla (A), Rayo Vallecano (H) and Osasuna (A).

The largest cruise ship in the world

On Tuesday we had a visit from the largest cruise ship in the world – Wonder of the seas. The newest in the Royal Caribbean fleet, its first passenger voyage took place on March 4 from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, before crossing the Atlantic to spend the summer in the Mediterranean. She has a capacity of 6,988 guests and, with a crew of 2,300, a grand total of 9,288 passengers. Not everyone in Palma was happy to see her. Activists’ platform against MegaCruises criticized Wonder‘s arrived saying she was in addition to another mega-cruise ship and three small cruise ships. “For three years we have been calling for this kind of tourism to stop, which the city can no longer bear,” they said, “but just as the season is starting, we see agreements being systematically broken.” The “agreements” they refer to are the commitment of the Balearic government for 2021 to limit arrivals, where possible, to three cruise ships per day, with one of them being allowed to be a mega- cruise liner carrying more than 5,000 people. It was supposed to start in 2022.

Job boom

And finally, on Wednesday, the Balearics celebrated the top of the charts April job levels. President Armengol said last month was the “best ever”, with 518,282 people registered for social security – 20% more than April 2021 and the highest ever for an April. The unemployment rate of 7.5% was the lowest since April 2007 and the third lowest on record. She said these “historical figures” have made the Balearic Islands the undisputed leader in job creation in Spain. The “negative cycle” of the pandemic has been broken.