Spain appears to be escaping another tourism crisis

by Lorraine Williamson
No tourism crisis in Spain

A few weeks ago, there were still fears of another tourism crisis in Spain. However, the most recent figures seem to prove otherwise. Tourism in Spain is performing best in all of Europe, even surpassing some pre-pandemic indicators. 

For weeks there have been fears of an approaching recession. This was partly due to inflation and the uncertain situation due to the war in Ukraine. Undoubtedly this is still a realistic scenario. However, tourism in Spain does not seem to be entering a downward spiral for the time being. Various indicators show that the recovery of the tourism sector in Spain in June will also continue in July and August. 

Spain leads the way in all of Europe 

The occupancy rate of hotels, the arrival of foreign tourists and their spending show that the tourism sector in Spain is developing beyond expectations. The SiteMinder platform compares indicators of the tourism sector in different countries using the World Hotel Index. The platform states that Spain is currently the leader of all European countries when it comes to recovery of tourism in Europe. 

Spain tourism surpasses numbers for pandemic 

“Spain is currently the best performer of all European countries, showing numbers above the global average,” said SiteMinder. In concrete terms, the occupancy rate of hotels in Spain is currently at 106% compared to August 2019. This puts Spain ahead of other tourist-attractive countries such as Italy (100.4%) and France (95.7%). The average occupancy rate of all affiliated hotels in the world is currently at 94.4% compared to August 2019. 

Cogesa Expats

Top summer with many foreign tourists to Spain 

SiteMinder doesn’t just look at occupancy to draw conclusions about the extent of the industry’s recovery. The arrival of tourists is also an important indicator. Earlier figures from INE Spain showed that June was a peak month with 7.5 million foreign tourists spending another 10% more compared to the same month in 2021. 

The same appears to be true for July and August. The number of flights booked in these two months has so far exceeded 20 million. With two weeks still remaining in August, this figure can only rise further. However, the number is slightly lower than the pre-pandemic figures. Furthermore, it is expected the INE will soon provide concrete figures on the expenditure of all these tourists. 

Will Spain escape another tourism crisis? 

While it is known that these are the peak months for tourism in Spain, how the low season will unfold is still unknown. However, experts – consulted by – are optimistic about these figures and conclusions for now. In the meantime, according to them, it is not necessary to talk about a new crisis for the tourism sector. 

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