Abta is lining up Palma to host the 2011 Travel Convention, Travel Weekly can reveal.

Abta declined to confirm the venue but is expected to make an announcement soon, with the smart money on the Majorcan capital.

The association has, until now, hosted the event in Palma once every 10 years. The first convention was on the Spanish island in 1973, returning again in 1983 and 1993.

After the convention was held in Orlando in 2004, Abta vowed to stick to short-haul destinations. The farthest afield it has been since then was Marrakech in 2006.

In Majorca, a new convention centre, the Palau de Congressos de Catalunya, is under construction in Palma. However, a financial setback means it may not be completed until the end of this year, which would be too late for the convention.

Other destinations thought to have been considered for this year’s event include Lanzarote and Tunisia, which withdrew after political unrest broke out last month.

Malta is also known to be keen to host the convention again.

Abta approached easyJet chief executive Carolyn McCall, who joined the carrier from Guardian Media Group last year, to speak at the event. However, an EasyJet spokesman said she had declined the invitation. 

GfK Ascent figures show the Balearics were the top-selling summer destination in the week to February 5.