In September, overnight stays by foreign tourists exceeded the ones from the Portuguese for the first time since the pandemic began. Britons accounted for 19%.
The tourist accommodation sector in September recorded 3.03 million overnight stays of non-residents, above the 2.06 million from residents. Since the beginning of the pandemic it was the first time that international tourists exceeded the number of domestic tourists, according to Statistics Portugal (INE).
In September, the sector received 2.06 million guests and 5.6 million overnight stays. These figures represent increases of 52.3% and 52.4%, respectively. Of the total number of guests, 1.09 million were residents and 968 thousand came from abroad. However, in terms of overnight stays, the scenario is different.
Of the 5.6 million overnight stays, 2.57 million were from residents in Portugal while 3.03 million were from foreign tourists. It was the first time since the pandemic began that the overnight stays of non-residents exceeded the ones from residents. “Overnight stays from non-residents doubled compared to September 2020 (+100.7%) and totalled 3.0 million but were about half of those recorded in September 2019 (-43.9%),” INE explained.
In a closer analysis, in September, the British market accounted for 19.1% of the total overnight stays by non-residents, followed by the German (13.2%), Spanish (12.4%) and French (10.5%) markets. However, INE highlights the growth registered in the Polish (+160.7%), Irish (+111.7%) and Belgian (+60.7%) markets between January and September, while the largest falls occurred in the Chinese (-74.6%), Canadian (-73.6%) and Brazilian (-57.7%) markets.
In terms of locations, the Algarve accounted for 33.5% of overnight stays in September, followed by the Lisbon Metropolitan Area (19%), the North (15%) and Madeira (12.4%).