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06 June 2024

Spain, the number one tourist destination for the Portuguese with 38% of all trips

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Spain is the number one tourist destination for the Portuguese abroad, according to a recent report by Turespaña. In 2022, the Spanish share of Portuguese travel abroad was 38.2%, surpassing that obtained in 2019 with respect to other international destinations. France, Italy and the United Kingdom are the destinations that follow Spain in terms of Portuguese travellers.

In 2023 the flow of Portuguese arrivals to Spain exceeded pre-pandemic levels, standing 15.4% above 2019, according to the Turespaña report. During the past year, there have been 16.01% more arrivals compared to 2022. Moreover, data for 2023 published by the Bank of Portugal place Spain in first place as a recipient of international tourist spending by the Portuguese. They spent €1.367 billion in our country in 2023, making this the best year in the historical series by showing an increase of 18.72% compared to 2019, the previous best figure.

In 2023, 2.8 million Portuguese tourists visited Spain, representing 3.3% of the total number of tourists received, spending an estimated €1.5 billion (1.5% of the total). The average expenditure per person and per day was €557 and €144, respectively, while the average stay was 3.9 nights. The average spend per person and average stay are the lowest of all the source markets, which is probably explained by the ease and proximity of access, thus favouring short stays.

First quarter of 2024

The main motivation of Portuguese tourists visiting Spain last year was leisure (75% of the total), followed by business trips (11%). They stayed mostly in hotels (70%) and to a much lower degree, in the homes of relatives or friends (11%). They mainly travelled without a tourist package (89%) and their favourite destinations were Galicia (26%), Andalusia (23%) and Catalonia (10%).

In the first quarter of 2024, the Portuguese market showed year-on-year stability in terms of the volume of tourists received (+0.4%), but, nevertheless, estimated expenditure fell compared to the previous year (-17.4%) due to the reduction in average spend per tourist (Turespaña estimate based on INE microdata).