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European tourist arrivals in Spain 2019, by country of residence

Spain ranked second on the World Tourism Organization’s list of most visited countries in the world, with its number of international visitors amounting to over 82 million in 2018. The Mediterranean country is one of Europe’s favorite holiday destinations in 2018 - the United Kingdom, Germany and France appeared in the leading positions of the largest number of international visitors to Spain by country, as confirmed by the data collected from the Spanish Statistics Institute (INE). This trend followed during 2019, with the United Kingdom ahead of Germany and France as the largest source of tourists in Spain with over 18 million visitors.

The United Kingdom: a key tourism source market

According to the most recent data, the United Kingdom was the main country of origin of Spain’s tourists in the past few years, with the number of tourists that originally reside on the British Isles growing by 6 million since 2010. Despite the fact that the average British visitor has been cutting down the length of their stay during recent years, the daily expenditure by tourists/visitors experienced a sharp increase and reached an average of 127 euros per person in 2018.

Tourism constitutes an essential industry for the Spanish economic system

Travel and tourism have become one of the leading engines of growth for the Spanish economy, featuring an ongoing increase in the GDP contribution over the last years and projected to reach approximately 178 billion euros in 2018. The industry also plays a key role to boost the Spanish employment market, which has been experiencing a significant improvement since the 2007 financial crisis jeopardized and destroyed many jobs across the country.

Number of European tourists arriving in Spain in 2018 and 2019, by country of residence

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Release date

February 2020



Survey time period

2018 and 2019

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