International tourism over 70% in Destination Barcelona for the first time since 2019
The latest tourism activity data in Destination Barcelona have been updated (May 2022 edition)
In May 2022, the tourist activity in Destination Barcelona maintained its pace of growth, which was initiated in February, thanks to the inherent seasonality of tourism and to the improvement of the Covid-19 conditions in Destination Barcelona, as well as in the source markets.
In May, the accommodation supply in Destination Barcelona grew by +11.6%, adding around +20,000 new available beds, and the global capacity stood at only -2.4% behind the same period in 2019.
Tourism demand increased once again compared to the previous month so that overnights in hotel establishments increased by +14.1% MoM and they were only -7.1% lower than in 2019.
In absolute terms, this recovery was basically due to the demand increase in Barcelona region, which recorded 250,000 more overnight stays than in the previous month (+32.9%), while in Barcelona city, the growth was more moderate (+100,000 overnight stays and +6.0% MoM).
In homes for tourist use (HTU), despite receiving more tourists than in April (+8.3%), the overnight stays were lower (-1.8%), which means a reduction in the average length of stay in this type of accommodation (3.7 nights). However, the total overnights in hotels establishments and HTUs were only -7.3% behind 2019.
Overnight stays in campistes and rural accommodation were over 2019 levels for the second consecutive month (11,0% and 5,4% respectively).
The steady reopening of air routes and its consequent increase in air capacity led Barcelona Airport to receive 3.8 million passengers in May (+8.4% MoM), almost 80% of the levels reached in May 2019.
In contrast, in Barcelona Port, cruise passengers were still -41.7% below 2019, despite a 66.2%-MoM increase, also coinciding with an increase of cruise ship supply. As for ferry passengers, they decreased by -12.9% MoM, although it must be reminded that the results of April were exceptional (+76.6% MoM), thanks to the Easter holidays.
The cultural facilities in Barcelona city registered around 230,000 visitors, of which about 65% were international.
Domestic tourism maintained the first position in the ranking of tourists in hotel establishments in both Destination Barcelona (27.5%) and Barcelona city (17.9%). However, and consequently, 7 out of 10 tourists in Destination Barcelona and 8 out of 10 tourists in Barcelona city were international, something that did not occur since 2019. As for the origin of these, in Barcelona city, the Americans continued on the top position (13.3%), followed by the French (8.6%), the British (8.5%), the Germans (6.5%), and the Italians (5.7%).
At Barcelona Airport, the proportion of passengers on domestic flights (28.6%) was also reduced in favour of passengers on international flights (71.4%). Despite being far from the domestic flight passengers, those travelling from Italy (9.9%) achieved the second position, followed by those from the UK (9.1%), France (7.8%), and Germany (7.7%).
Regarding the economic impact of tourism in Barcelona city in May, purchases with bankcards in the city shops also show how the expenses in tourism activity grew over +85% compared to the same period last year, while culture and leisure expenses grew by near +40%. 1 out of 4 bankcard payments in the city was made with an international card. On the other hand, the expenditure during the stay per person and day in the whole of the Destination stood at 83.5€, almost 15€ on the previous month, and +23.4% on the same period in 2019.
Finally, the tourism activity job market kept improving in May: registered unemployment continued falling, and for the ninth consecutive month, it was lower than pre-pandemic levels (-17.8% compared to 2019). The new hiring increased for the fourth consecutive month (+24.5%), mainly thanks to the growth of indefinite contracts, which surpassed again the temporary contracts (53.5% vs 46.6%).
With the analysis of the different thematic areas, which offer a transversal vision of the sector, the Observatory of Tourism in Barcelona updates the monitoring of the tourism activity. This analysis complements the monthly report on the Profile and Habits of Tourists in Barcelona Destination. All data is presented in three geographical areas: Barcelona city, Barcelona region, and Destination Barcelona.