The number of nights spent by Spaniards in tourist accommodation reached pre-pandemic levels in July
Tourism is arguably the sector of the Spanish economy which has been hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic over the last 18 months, but data published on Tuesday by the central government’s statistics unit show that in terms of domestic tourism at least the situation is returning to almost the same point as in 2019, before the first cases of Covid-19 had been reported.
The figures made public this week refer to the occupancy of hotels and other registered tourist accommodation, and show that during July the number of nights spent in such establishments across Spain reached 26.4 million. This is well over double the figure reported in July 2020 but still 39 per cent lower than in July 2019.
However, the shortfall in comparison with pre-pandemic figures is accounted for entirely by a 59.5 per cent fall in the number of nights spent by visitors from outside Spain, and the figure for domestic tourists is 0.4 per cent higher than two years ago. In regions such as Asturias, where the number of foreign visitors was low even before the advent of coronavirus, the overall figure is also close to recovering the level of 2019, and as international flights continue to resume other parts of Spain may also be able to report similar developments during August and the autumn.
The domestic tourism figures show increases in the number of nights spent in 9 of the country’s 17 regions since 2019, the most significant being in the Balearics (15.6 per cent), Catalunya (12 per cent) and Andalucía (10.3 per cent), while the shortfall still remains an important one in Madrid (-30.4 per cent).
In terms of foreign visitors, though, there is still ground to made up in all regions of the country, particularly Madrid (with a shortfall of 69.4 per cent in comparison with July 2019), Catalunya (-63.1 per cent), the Canaries (-59.9 per cent) and Andalucía (-59 per cent), and with travel restrictions and Covid passports seemingly becoming permanent at least for the foreseeable future, the recovery process is likely to be a long one.
Source: Murcia Today