Tourists coming from outside of the European Union represent just 12% of the total of foreign tourists that Portugal received, but answered for 21% of tourism income.
Tourists coming from outside of the European Union are the ones that spend more in Portugal, on average. Last year, in just one day, these tourists spent in shopping the same amount that European tourist spent in an entire week. All told, these tourists — which correspond to just 12% of the total — answered for 21% of tourism income obtained last year.
"The consumption in a single store in Paris or London is five times higher than the total amount spent by Chinese tourists in Portugal. Imagine the impact we could have if we went about softening these differences.”
The math was done by Tax Free Global Blue, according to the VAT returns to tourists last year, the Chinese tourists are the ones that spend the most: on average, they paid 642 euros per purchase. They are followed by the North-Americans, who spent 506 euros per purchase, and by the Angolan and Russian tourists — around 250 euros per purchase each. Globally speaking, the average tax free purchase increased by 36% to 269 euros in 2017.
This Friday, João Vasconcelos, former Industry secretary of State, highlighted that tourists from countries outside of the European Union represented just 12% of the total of foreign tourists Portugal received, but accounted for 21% of tourism income, which surpassed 15 billion euros last year. This means that the 2.4 million tourists from outside of Europe that came to Portugal in 2017 left over 3 billion euros in the country.
Dimas Gimeno, chairman of El Corte Inglés, emphasized the importance of stimulating the sector’s policies: “In 2017, large warehouses in London achieved 500 million euros in sales to Chinese tourists, a much similar volume than in Paris. But this number is far from the 80 million euros Chinese tourists spent in credit card purchases in all of Portugal, last year”.
And he specified: “In other words, the consumption in a single store in Paris or London is five times higher than the total amount spent by Chinese tourists in Portugal. Imagine the impact we could have if we went about softening these differences”.