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Domestic and outbound tourism in Spain - statistics & facts

As a world-renown travel destination, the tourism sector in Spain is often observed from an international perspective, focusing mostly on inbound tourism. However, Spaniards themselves are also important contributors to tourism in their homeland. By the end of the past decade, Spanish residents took more than 170 million trips within their country borders each year, which in turn amounted annually to nearly 30 billion euros in spending.

With whom do Spanish domestic tourists prefer to travel?

The Spanish culture is more socially oriented than other European cultures and this shows in the Spaniards’ travel behavior. In 2020, most domestic trips in Spain were taken by people staying at a friend’s or relative’s house, while 40 percent of the trips were motivated by the desire to visit loved ones. In the previous year, only seven percent of Spanish survey participants stated that they would travel alone during the Easter holidays, while more than half planned a trip with their partners or family.

International tourism from Spain

With the fourth largest population in the European Union, Spain was the region’s fifth source market for outbound tourism in 2019, accounting for more than 17 million trips in total. That is around one trip per three residents of the country. In that year, France was the top destination for Spanish international tourists. However, the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic not only reduced the tourism volume from Spain; it also placed Portugal as the most visited country by Spaniards in 2020.

Profile of Spanish international travelers

Regardless of the type of travel destination, Spaniards aged between 45 to 64 years old constitute the group that travels the most, and roughly half of the total number of trips were taken by residents of the country who hold a higher education degree. But despite the most immediate assumption regarding income, it is the middle-class which accounts for the highest number of tourists in Spain. In 2020, nearly three in ten tourists from Spain lived in a household with a monthly income between 1,500 and 2,499 euros.

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