Tourism statistics - nights spent at tourist accommodation establishments

Data extracted in June 2018.

Planned article update: September 2018.

Highlights

In March 2018 compared with March 2017, 18.9 million more nights (+10.8 %) were spent in tourist accommodation in the EU.

Nights spent at tourist accommodation across the EU grew by 4.5 % in 2017

Tourists travelling inside their own country spent 4.5% more nights at EU tourist accommodation in 2017.

Annual estimates - Number of nights spent at tourist accommodation establishments, EU-28, 2000-2017 (index 2000=100)

This article focuses on the short-term evolutions in the nights spent in tourist accommodation in the European Union (EU). The data from the most recent reference month available (March 2018) are compared with the same month of the previous year. In addition, data from the first quarter 2018 (January to March) are compared with the same period of the previous year.

Furthermore, the article includes estimates for the annual comparison of the entire year 2017 with 2016.

Please also see the Eurostat News Release 24 January 2018.


Full article

Nights spent in March 2018, up in nearly all Member States

In March 2018 compared with March 2017, 18.9 million more nights (+10.8 %) were spent in tourist accommodation in the European Union (see Figure 1 and Table 1). This increase, which was observed in 24 out of 26 EU Member States for which data are available, was due to both non-residents (inbound tourists) who spent 9.5 million more nights (+11.5 %) and residents (domestic tourists travelling inside their own country of residence) who spent 9.4 million more nights (+10.1 %).

Figure 1: Percentage change in number of nights spent in tourist accommodation establishments, March 2018 compared with March 2017 (%) - Source: Eurostat (tour_occ_nim)


Table 1: Nights spent in tourist accommodation establishments, March 2017 and March 2018 (thousand nights) - Source: Eurostat (tour_occ_nim)

The biggest increases were recorded in Croatia (+35.9 %) followed by Cyprus (+22.0 %) and Latvia (+19.7 %), while twelve more Member States reported increases of at least 10 %. Drops were registered in Luxembourg (-5.4 %) and in Ireland (-1.1 %).

In the segment of hotels, the number of nights spent in March 2018 increased by 8.3 % compared with March 2017. Croatia and Cyprus reported the highest increases followed by Latvia, Malta, Hungary, the Netherlands and the Czech Republic which all recorded increases above 10.0 %. Luxembourg and Ireland recorded decreases (-6.9 % and -2.4 % respectively).

Looking at the three-month period from January to March 2018, an increase of 6.7 % was recorded in the number of nights spent in tourist accommodation establishments, compared with the same period one year earlier (see Table 2). In January 2018 compared with January 2017, the number of nights spent increased by +6.5 %, while in February 2018 compared with the same month in 2017 an increase of +2.3 % was observed (see Figure 2).

Table 2: Nights spent in tourist accommodation establishments, January to March 2017 and January to March 2018 (thousand nights)- Source: Eurostat (tour_occ_nim)


Figure 2: Evolution of the number of nights spent in EU-28 tourist accommodation establishments, January to March 2017 and January to March 2018 (million nights) - Source: Eurostat (tour_occ_nim)

Nights spent at tourist accommodation across the EU grew by 4.5 % in 2017

Looking at the twelve-month period from January to December 2017, an increase of 4.5 % was recorded in the number of nights spent in tourist accommodation establishments, compared with the twelve months of 2016, while hotels recorded a growth of 4.6 % (see Table 3).

Table 3: Nights spent in tourist accommodation establishments, January to December 2017 and January to December 2016 (thousand nights) - Source: Eurostat (tour_occ_nim)

This growth was mainly due to the number of nights spent in April (Easter holidays) and June 2017 which increased by +24.9 % and +9.6 % respectively compared with the same months of 2016 (see Figure 3).

Figure 3: Evolution of the number of nights spent in EU-28 tourist accommodation establishments, January to December 2017 and January to December 2016 (million nights) - Source: Eurostat (tour_occ_nim)

Estimates for all three types of tourist accommodation establishments show rises for 2017; the number of nights spent at hotels, at rented holiday accommodation and at campsites increased by 4.6 %, 3.1 % and 7.1 % respectively (see Table 4).

Table 4: Annual estimates - Percentage change in number of nights spent at tourist accommodation establishments by NACE class, 2017 compared with 2016 (%) - Source: Eurostat (tour_occ_nim)

The increase at EU level reflected national evolutions; in all but one of the 27 Member States where data is available the number of nights spent at tourist accommodation increased in 2017. Latvia, Slovenia and Croatia recorded the highest growth (+12.1 %, +11.3 % and +10.6 % respectively), while Luxembourg registered a drop of -2.2 % (see Figure 4).

Figure 4: Annual estimates - Percentage change in number of nights spent at tourist accommodation establishments, 2017 compared with 2016 (%) - Source: Eurostat (tour_occ_nim)

Increase in nights spent at tourist accommodation due to residents and non-residents

In 2017 the EU tourist accommodation sector continued its recovery that started in 2010 following the two years of decline, in 2008 and 2009 (see Figure 5).

Figure 5: Annual estimates - Number of nights spent at tourist accommodation establishments, EU-28, 2000-2017 (index 2000=100) - Source: Eurostat (tour_occ_nim) (tour_occ_ninat)

The nights spent by non-residents grew at a slower pace in 2017 (+4.6 %) than in 2016 (+5.1 %). The growth of non-resident nights at EU level was reflected in all EU Member States for which data are available, except the United Kingdom (-2.7 %) and Luxembourg (-2.4 %) (see Figure 6).

Figure 6: Annual estimates - Percentage change in number of nights spent by non-residents at tourist accommodation establishments, 2017 compared with 2016 (%) - Source: Eurostat (tour_occ_nim)

Following an increase of 3.0 % in 2016, nights spent by residents increased by 4.5 % in 2017. Malta and Latvia reported the highest growth rates (+13.6 % and +12.6 % respectively), while residents of Greece, Cyprus, Bulgaria and Sweden spent fewer nights in tourist accommodation of their own countries in 2017 compared with 2016 (see Figure 7).

Figure 7: Annual estimates - Percentage change in number of nights spent by residents at tourist accommodation establishments, 2017 compared with 2016 (%) - Source: Eurostat (tour_occ_nim)

Source data for tables and graphs

Data sources

This article presents the short-term trends in nights spent in tourist accommodation in the European Union (EU), analysing monthly data provided by Member States.

For the year-to-year evolution of the number of nights spent in tourist accommodation and a detailed analysis of 2016 annual data, see Tourism statistics - annual results for the accommodation sector.

Context

The EU is a major tourist destination, with five Member States among the world’s top ten destinations for holidaymakers, according to UNWTO[1] data. Tourism is an important activity in the EU which contributes to employment and economic growth, as well as to the development of rural, peripheral or less-developed areas. These characteristics drive the demand for reliable and harmonised statistics on this activity, as well as within the wider context of regional policy and sustainable development policy areas.

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