These signals prove tourism recovery in Spain

by Lorraine Williamson
tourism recovery

The recovery of tourism in Spain is a fact. Earlier, booking data for the Semana Santa showed that the tourism sector is recovering. There are now more signals showing that tourism in Spain is improving. 

The tourism sector suffered greatly from more than two years of restrictions due to the corona pandemic. Tens of thousands of people lost their jobs and hardly earned any money. Consequently, many companies were unable to survive the crisis. 

Four signals pointing to a clear recovery of tourism in Spain 

However, on Monday, Business Insider published an article detailing some signs that Spain’s tourism industry is recovering. However, it is not just a recovery! The figures also show that the levels achieved before the pandemic are even being surpassed. 

Increase in workers in Spain’s tourism sectors 

Before the pandemic, tourism accounted for 12.5% of Spain’s gross domestic product and more than 2.7 million people worked in this sector. At the height of the pandemic, the share of the tourism sector fell to 5.5% of GDP. 

According to the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism, the sector again employed 2.55 million people in April 2022, a figure reflected in the number of social security applications. In April 2019, before the Covid-19 outbreak, the sector registered 2.49 million social security contributors. 

Tourists’ daily spending goes up 

Recently, Egatur, which falls under the National Institute of Statistics, published the total expenditure of tourists in Spain. In April 2022, foreign tourists spent more than €6.9 billion in Spain. Although this is still slightly below the expenditure of April 2019 (€7.09 billion), the expenditure per tourist has increased from €153 (April 2019) to €155 per person per day. 

Record Renfe train ticket sales and promising flight bookings

At the end of May, Renfe registered a record number of passengers in one day since the start of the pandemic. A total of 169,136 tickets were sold on the AVE lines for long and medium distances on May 27, 2022. According to Renfe, the most popular trips from Madrid are to Andalucia, Valencia, Galicia and Catalonia. 

The aviation industry expects “a year at least equal to 2019, which was already a record year,” said ALA aviation sector president Gándara. For the summer season – from April to October – 212 million tickets have been booked, just 0.4% lower than in 2019. 

Spain registers more foreign tourists every month 

In April 2022, Spain was allowed to receive 6.1 million foreign tourists, according to data from Frontur. This figure does not reach the 7.2 million of April 2019, but this body also agrees that recovery is imminent. The majority of tourists come from the United Kingdom with a share of 20.4%. 

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