Statistics Explained

Tourism statistics - expenditure

Data extracted in April 2021.

Planned article update: June 2023.


In 2019, EU residents spent an estimated €479 billion on tourism trips, mostly on trips abroad (57%).

EU residents spent 83% of their tourism expenditure on trips inside Europe (76% inside the EU).

Total expenditure by destination, EU, 2019 (%)
Source: Eurostat (tour_dem_extotw)

This article is part of the Eurostat online publication Tourism trips of Europeans. The publication provides recent statistics on tourism demand in the European Union (EU) and EFTA countries.

The other articles in this online publication analyse physical flows of tourists. This one adds a monetary dimension by taking a closer look at the expenditure of EU residents during tourism trips made in 2019. In the context of the article, all expenditure for a given trip refers to individual expenditure (not household expenditure or the expenditure of a travel party). The expenditure is allocated to the main country of destination, no matter in which country the service provider is based or where the turnover or added value was created. For example, if an individual uses an airline carrier, travel agency or tour operator based in a country other than that of the main destination, this expenditure will be allocated to the main country of destination, not to the country of the airline carrier, travel agency or tour operator.

Full article

Nearly half of Europeans' tourism expenditure was spent by German and French tourists

In 2019, EU residents spent an estimated EUR 479 billion on tourism trips (see Table 1). Of this, they spent 43 % on trips within their own country of residence (domestic tourism) and 57 % on trips abroad (outbound tourism).

Table 1: Tourism expenditure of EU residents by destination (domestic/outbound) and by duration of the trip, 2019
Source: Eurostat (tour_dem_extot)

In seven of the 27 EU countries, residents spent more than half of the tourism expenditure during 2019 on domestic trips (see Figure 1). The highest shares for domestic expenditure were observed for Romania (79 %) followed by Greece (72 %), Spain (65 %), France (64 %), Italy, Portugal (both at 59 %) and Bulgaria (54 %). For the majority of countries, however, most of the tourism expenditure occurred in foreign destinations with the residents of Luxembourg, Malta and Belgium having spent more than 90 % of their total tourism expenditure on outbound trips.

Figure 1: Tourism expenditure of EU residents by destination (domestic/outbound), 2019 (% in total expenditure)
Source: Eurostat (tour_dem_extot)

In all countries, most tourism expenditure occurred during longer trips of four or more nights (EU average: 73 %), with residents of Greece, Belgium and the Netherlands having spent more than 80 % of their tourism expenditure for long trips.

For each tourism trip, Europeans spent on average EUR 421 (see Table 2). Broken down by destination, they spent EUR 247 on average on a domestic trip and EUR 883 on an outbound trip. The average spent per night was EUR 84 (EUR 62 on average for each domestic tourism night and EUR 114 a night on average for trips abroad).

Table 2: Average tourism expenditure of EU residents per trip and per night, by destination (domestic/outbound), 2019 (EUR)
Source: Eurostat (tour_dem_extot)

German and French tourists were the biggest spenders in absolute terms. Their expenditure accounted for nearly half (49 %) of the tourism expenditure of all EU residents. This share is much more than the proportion of German and French tourists in the total number of trips (42 %) or overnight stays (45 %) - see the article on the characteristics of tourism trips.

Per trip, tourists from Luxembourg spent the most (EUR 946), followed by Maltese tourists (EUR 696), while less than EUR 170 per trip was spent by residents of Czechia and Hungary (see Figure 2). Domestic tourism expenditure per trip was highest in Austria (EUR 370), followed by Germany (EUR 336). The biggest spenders per outbound tourism trip (EUR 1 000 or more) were tourists from Sweden, Cyprus, Denmark, France and Germany.

Residents of Luxembourg, Malta, Austria, Sweden and Denmark spent at least EUR 120 per night on average during their tourism trips, while residents of Greece and Czechia spent less than EUR 40 (see Figure 3).

Figure 2: Average tourism expenditure of EU residents per trip, 2019 (EUR)
Source: Eurostat (tour_dem_extot)

Figure 3: Average tourism expenditure of EU residents per night, 2019 (EUR)
Source: Eurostat (tour_dem_extot)

Europeans spent 76 % of their total tourism expenditure on trips inside the EU

In 2019, intra-EU tourism accounted for 92 % of all tourism trips (73 % of which were domestic trips and 19 % trips to another Member State). In terms of expenditure, however, domestic trips accounted for 43 % of total tourism expenditure (see Figure 4), all EU destinations (including domestic) for 76 % and destinations outside the EU for 24 % (compared with only 8 % of the number of tourism trips).

Figure 4: Tourism expenditure of EU residents by destination, 2019 (%)
Source: Eurostat (tour_dem_extotw)

Europeans travelling to foreign continents spent most on trips to America (7 % of total expenditure by EU residents on tourism trips), followed by Asia (6 %), then Africa (3 %) and Oceania (1 %). European destinations outside the EU accounted for around 7 % of all of the tourism expenditure of EU residents.

Expenditure on accommodation accounted for one third of the tourism budget of EU residents

Accommodation took up 34 % of tourism expenditure, while transport accounted for 30 % and miscellaneous other costs for 36 % (see Figure 5). Looking at domestic and outbound trips separately, the share of transport expenditure was higher by 10 percentage points for outbound trips than for domestic trips. The difference in the share of accommodation expenditure was less significant (+2 percentage points for outbound trips).

Figure 5: Tourism expenditure of EU residents by type of expenditure, 2019 (%)
Source: Eurostat (tour_dem_exexp)

On average, expenditure per trip was higher for trips for which the main accommodation was rented (see Figure 6). The average cost of trips spent at hotels was EUR 655 (as compared with the overall average of EUR 421), while trips spent at an own holiday home cost EUR 230 on average and those spent at accommodation provided free of charge by friends or relatives cost EUR 173.

Figure 6: Average tourism expenditure per trip by type of accommodation, EU, 2019 (Euro)
Source: Eurostat (tour_dem_exac) (tour_dem_ttac)

For trips where the main means of accommodation was rented accommodation, the average expenditure per night on accommodation was EUR 48 – ranging from EUR 22 per night for trips spent mainly at campsites to EUR 60 for trips spent mainly at hotels (see Figure 7).

Figure 7: Average expenditure per night on accommodation for trips of EU residents, by type of rented accommodation, EU, 2019 (Euro)
Source: Eurostat (tour_dem_exac)

Age made a slight difference to the average expenditure per trip

Tourists under 45 years old accounted for less tourism expenditure (44 % of expenditure made by all age groups) than tourism trips in 2019 (48 %). On average tourists of this age group spent EUR 386 per trip, while the youngest (15-24 years old) spent the least (EUR 339) (see Figure 8 and Figure 9). The rest (and older) of the age groups spent EUR 453 on average per trip, while tourists aged from 45 to 54 years spent the most (EUR 462).

Figure 8: Share_of_the_age_group_in_the_total_number_of_tourism_trips_and_expenditure,_EU,_2019_(%)
Source: Eurostat (tour_dem_exage) (tour_dem_ttage)

Figure 9: Average tourism expenditure per trip by age group and destination, EU, 2019 (Euro)
Source: Eurostat (tour_dem_exage)

Business travel accounted for 15 % of total tourism expenditure in 2019

Holiday, leisure and recreation trips accounted for the majority of tourism expenditure (64 %) in 2019 (see Figure 10). Visits to relatives and friends accounted for only 16 % of all tourism expenditure but they represented 33 % of all tourism trips (accommodation was often free on such trips). A typical visit to relatives and friends costs just over half the average tourism trip for personal reasons (EUR 207 compared to EUR 403) (see Figure 11).

Figure 10: Share of trips and expenditure by purpose of the trip, EU, 2019 (%)
Source: Eurostat (tour_dem_expur) (tour_dem_ttpur)

Figure 11: Average expenditure per trip by purpose of the trip, EU, 2019 (Euro)
Source: Eurostat (tour_dem_expur)

Business trips accounted for 15 % of tourism expenditure in 2019. At EUR 570, they recorded the highest average expenditure per trip while the expenditure per night (see Figure 12) was 2.2 times higher for business trips than for trips for personal purposes (EUR 171 per night versus EUR 77 per night).

Figure 12: Average expenditure per night by purpose of the trip, EU, 2019 (Euro)
Source: Eurostat (tour_dem_expur)

Source data for tables and graphs

Data sources

Collection of annual data on trips of EU residents

The collection consists of harmonised data collected by the Member States in the frame of the Regulation (EU) No 692/2011 of the European Parliament and of the Council concerning European statistics on tourism.

The scope of observation for data on tourism trips are all tourism trips with at least one overnight stay, made by the resident population aged 15 and over. It includes trips made for private or professional purpose, outside the usual environment.


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.

Direct access to

Other articles
Dedicated section

Annual data on trips of EU residents
Number of tourism trips (tour_dem_tt)
Number of tourism nights (tour_dem_tn)
Expenditure on tourism trips (tour_dem_ex)