The rate of overnight stays increased by 6.4% last year, meaning that the Europe’s second most visited country is well on the road to recovery after the recession.
Although France boasts the number one spot in the world of tourism with respect to the amount of visitors it receives, Spain beats its neighbors in terms of revenue and average spending.
Whereas France owes a lot of its tourism to campsites, caravans and one-day visits without the need for sleeping, Spain has built its reputation and tourism base on long-term holidays with the need for hotels. It is, indeed, this area, which drastically improved in 2011 in the aftermath of the recession of the years before.
Thanks to clever marketing campaigns and general improvements in the financial situation of many travelers, Spain’s hotels enjoyed 286.6 million overnight stays in 2011, meaning an overall increase of 6.4%.
The rate of growth was at its peak during the first quarter of 2011 before uprisings in Arab countries got in the way of further progress, striking fear amongst potential incoming tourists. There has been a steady increase in the amount of advance bookings, and potential visitors to Spain booked much more rooms in 2011 than 2010.
Spain’s Iberian neighbor, Portugal, has experienced a similar upturn in fortune and, with the exception of Porto, has seen much fuller hotels in comparison with recession times. The success in both cases comes despite the fact that the prices and the standard have remained the same as in times before 2009.
The changes have been made in marketing sectors and advertising. This is mostly what has driven the lost tourists back to Spain and Portugal and got them to stay in hotels.