A total of 31.1 million foreigners visited Spain during 2021, which represents an increase of 64.4 percent compared to the figures for 2020, during which Spain received 18.9 million visitors.
These numbers have been published by the National Institute of Statistics (INE), TheSchengen.com reports.
In addition, the report shows that the total spending of non-resident tourists in Spain during 2021 amounted to 34.82 billion euros, an increase of 7 percent compared to the previous year’s figures.
“December activity was better than expected, and this allowed us to meet our expectations for the end of the year, which are very good if we take into account the uncertainty generated by Omicron, which did not have the expected negative impact,” Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism Reyes Maroto noted in this connection.
Like many European countries, the tourism industry in Spain has been severely affected by the spread of the coronavirus and its new strains.
However, the Spanish government previously confirmed that the tourism sector is making great progress. After an increase in the number of arrivals recorded last year, the country’s authorities stressed that the tourism sector could return to pre-pandemic levels in 2022.
In this regard, Minister Maroto stressed that “the recovery of the sector will be strengthened in 2022, and Spain will benefit from its strength compared to other competing destinations.”
According to figures provided by the National Institute of Statistics, a total of 2.9 million international tourists visited Spain in December 2021, an increase of 354.5 percent compared to the figures for the same month 2020.
Most tourists from the following countries visited Spain in December 2021:
France – 532,218 tourists (18% of the total, 224.8% increase compared to December 2020 figures) – United Kingdom – 415,585 (280.0% increase compared to December 2020) – Germany – 405,064 tourists (389.7% increase)
According to the report, the Canary Islands were the top main destination for tourists in December, accounting for 30.6 percent of the total, followed by Catalonia (18.9 percent) and Valencia (13.0 percent).
As for the spending of international visitors on tourism in Spain, in December 2021 it reached 3.54 billion euros, registering an increase of 408.4 percent compared to the figures for the same period a year earlier.
The average tourist spend is €1,201 with a year-on-year increase of 11.8%. On the other hand, average daily spending grew by 14.5 percent to 126 euros.”
According to INE, the most significant independent communities in tourism spending in December were as follows:
Canary Islands (35.1 percent) Catalonia (15.5 percent) Community of Madrid (12.6 percent)
Based on figures previously published by the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), due to the Corona virus, nearly 202 thousand people working in the travel and tourism industry in Spain have lost their jobs, which represents a decrease of 19.5 percent in the employment sector.