Record international tourism arrivals and expenditure figures for the first quarter of 2019


Between January and April 2019, Spain welcomed 21.4 million foreign tourists to its shores, who spent a total of 22.489 billion euros: record figures that have grown by 4.4 and 5.1% compared to last year, respectively. These figures show that the Spanish tourism industry continues to grow, despite the recovery of competing holiday destinations.

These figures confirm the good health of the Spanish tourism industry. The Spanish Secretary of State for Tourism, Isabel Oliver, has encouraged the industry to continue closely collaborating with autonomous, island and local administrations in order to “maintain Spain’s competitive leadership on a global level”.

In April alone, the arrival of international tourists increased by 5.7% compared to the same month in 2018, with up to 7.2 million visitors coming to Spain. Meanwhile, the expenditure of these tourists reached 7.095 billion euros – 7.2% more than the figure corresponding to the previous year – according to the data published on Monday by the Spanish National Statistics Institute (INE).

These indicators – which have now been increasing for eight and nine months in a row, respectively – received a boost in April due to the “Holy Week effect”, among other factors. Last year Holy Week bridged the months of March and April but fell entirely in April this time around.

The arrival of tourists in March and April increased by 5.3% (10.4 million), spending 6.4% more money than the same period last year (13.133 billion euros).

The average spend per tourist in April was 990 euros, 1.3% more than 2018; and the average daily spend increased by 6.3% to 153 euros per person. The average stay was for 6.5 days (0.3 days fewer than last year).

Tourists from the United Kingdom topped the table for the quarter, with 4.3 million tourists travelling from the UK. There was even an inter-annual increase of 0.1%, despite lower figures in the first months of the year owing to the effects of Brexit negotiations. German tourists were second placed (2.9 million, with an increase of 6.5%), followed by France (2.7 million and a decrease of 2%).
Spain has seen a notable increase in the arrival of US tourists, with 785,137 tourists arriving during the first quarter of the year, comprising an inter-annual rise of 17.5%. Further improvements could be seen in Portuguese tourists, with an increase of 15.6% (706,089 tourists); and Russian tourists, with an increase of 10.5% (271,265 tourists).
In terms of expenditure, UK tourists spent 3.968 billion euros (+3.5%); German tourists spent 2.98 billion euros (+5.2%); and French tourists, 1.637 billion euros (+1.1%).


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