Tourism is recovering, but is still far from 2019 levels

In the first nine months of 2021 Customer presence in catering establishments has increased compared to 2020 (+22.3%), but remains well below the level of 2019 (-38.4%).

Some tourism macro dates in 2021 (January-September):

  • +40.3% tourist presence of the foreign component in the first nine months of 2021 compared to the same period of 2020
  • +42 million visitors in summer 2021 compared to 2020
  • +16% long summer holidays compared to the same period in 2020

The trend is rising, but tourism is still in crisis in the first nine months of 2021

The first nine months of 2021 compared to 2020 are showing signs of improvement, with a significant increase in attendances (+42.4 million, +22.3%) and arrivals (+8 million, +16.2%). Of particular note is the recovery in flows of non-resident customers in Italy (+40.3%) and, to a lesser extent, of resident customers (+14.2%). Data by accommodation type also shows a positive trend for both the non-hotel sector (+27.4%) and the hotel sector (+18.7%).

Compared to 2020 Instead, the decline is significant European countries The largest decreases in visitor numbers are recorded in Malta (-65.4%), Latvia (-58.7%), Hungary (-57.8%) and Portugal (-56.2%). Spain followed with a drop of 54.6%. Compared to 2019, Italy shows a less negative trend than the European average (-38.4%).

2021 winter season cancelled, signs of summer recovery

In the first quarter of 2021, compared to the same quarter of 2019, there was an 81.7% decrease in arrivals and 79.7% in visitors.

In the summer quarter (July-September), following the possibility of resuming interregional travel, tourist flows show a clear recovery: the total presence is around 86% of the figures recorded in the same quarter of 2019. With a slight increase (+0.9%), foreign tourists recorded a significant decline (-30.5%), albeit more subdued than in the previous quarters.

Recreational regions of Sardinia, Veneto, Friuli-Venezia Giulia and Emilia-Romagna

At the territorial level, data for the first nine months of 2021 indicate a more pronounced recovery in tourist presence in the islands (+45.1% compared to the same period in 2020) and the North-East (+23.8%), Central Italy, in particular, recorded more modest growth (+16.5% compared to +22.3% nationally).

The number of overnight stays grew in Sardinia (+62.8%), followed by Veneto (+48.3%), Friuli-Venezia Giulia (+48.2) and Emilia-Romagna (+33.3%). On the other hand, decreases were recorded in Valle d’Aosta (-31.2%), the Autonomous Province of Trento (-10.9%), the Autonomous Province of Bolzano (-8.4%) and Lazio (-1%).

Tourism spending down drastically in 2021

In 2020, tourism spending suffered a significant decline (-33.8% for domestic tourism spending and -65.7% for overseas tourism spending) due to the restrictions imposed by the pandemic.

Residents who have stayed in hospitality establishments in Italy have done so spent an average of €408 per trip and €77 per night, less than half of what was spent on a trip abroad (average 769 euros). Also due to the shorter duration of trips in catering establishments across national borders, the average daily expenditure abroad (135 euros) is 58 euros higher per day than in Italy (the difference was 41 euros in 2019).

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