Tourism breaks records in January, but with the smallest growth in four years

  • ECO News
  • 15 March 2018

The Portuguese hotel business surpassed, for the first time, the one million guests threshold in any month of January. But growth is decreasing to the slowest rhythm since 2014.

The tourism sector continues to break records in the beginning of the year, after ending 2017 with the best results ever. For the first time since INE keeps record, hotel businesses received more than one million guests in January. But now that numbers reached higher thresholds, growth also significantly slowed down. In the first month of this year, tourism registered the smallest growth in four years.

Data disclosed this Thursday by INE show that the Portuguese hotel business received 1,019,200 guests in January, which accounted for 2.5 million overnight stays. These numbers correspond to 3.7% and 5.1% increases, respectively, in comparison to January of last year. These are, however, the smallest increases since 2014, the year in which tourism started to recover from the contraction.

In spite of the deceleration, the total amount of hotel business revenue continued growing by two digits. In January, hotels invoiced over 138 million euros, which corresponded to a 12.2% homologous growth. Even so, there was a decrease: in January of last year, income had already grown by 18%. As for the average income per room available, it stood at 25.1 euros, 11.6% more than in January of last year.

The average stay increased 1.4%, standing at 2.47 nights, while occupancy rate per bed increased only by 1.1 percentage points, to 30%.

Justifying the decrease in the growth of the number of guests and overnight stays corresponded to 1.8 million overnight stays, a 4.3% increase, far from the 18% growth from last January. As for Portuguese residents, they corresponded to 764.8 thousand overnight stays in January, 7% more than one year ago, which represents a 1.6% growth that had been registered in January of 2017.