Wayne M. Gore - May 30, 2023
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In Italy, tourism has started again in a big way, and among foreigners, the Americans are the first. And it is a fact that is consolidating, given that already last year, there was a real invasion of stars and stripes after the restrictions of Covid, a sign that our country continues to represent a privileged destination for the travel expectations of the American tourist, perhaps in search of the Italian style and the iconic Italian good life in the world that never stops.

Tourism is growing twice as fast as other sectors of the economy, also supported by the travel mood of Italian travelers. Of course, April in Italy coincides with Easter and the long weekends of April 25 and May 1. However, spring has always been the time to start the tourist season, even for those coming from outside. And so, if we calculate that between April 25 and May 1, 17 million Italians traveled (9 million for Liberation Day and 8 for Labor Day), to these must be added the foreigners who consider the United States as their first nationality, followed by Germans, French, English, Swiss, and Spanish. And the most populous city is Rome.

"The long spring weekends do not come as a surprise; they confirm the positive trend of last year," said Maria Carmela Colaiacovo, President of the Italian Hotel Association Confindustria, "but what gives us hope is the stability and continuity of international tourism, which is showing particular attention to our country at this moment."

But positive responses are also coming from other markets, such as Brazil, which is moving significantly again, and from the first signs of Chinese tourists returning. In terms of occupancy rates, Venice is at over 90%, Rome at 85%, and Florence at just over 75%. The results for Milan and Turin are also encouraging, with 67% and 65% of rooms booked, respectively.

According to a study by Istituto Piepoli, 75% of Americans indicate Italy as number one among those possible in Europe. On the same wavelength Federalberghi, which confirmed the figures of the 17 million travelers thanks to its study ACS Marketing Solutions, estimates the turnover at around 7.4 billion euros.

According to the Federalberghi study, the main reasons that led Italians to go on vacation during the long spring weekends were the search for relaxation and fun, where the main activities during the days around April 25 were culture, with visits to museums or exhibitions (22.9%) and monuments (21.4%), followed by walks (36.5%), excursions and trips (32.8%). The situation is similar for travel plans for the May 1 holiday, where visits to cultural heritage (museums or exhibitions 24.5%, monuments, and archaeological sites 24%) top the list of travelers' intentions, followed by walks (41%), excursions and trips (29.4%).

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