Nearly three million people visited the city in the summer

Nearly three million people visited the city in the summer

Tourism. The figure is 15% lower than the summer of 2019, but the average duration of stays has increased to 5.3 nights.

Nearly three million tourists visited Barcelona between June and the end of August, some 15% fewer than the summer of 2019, but staying longer on average at 5.3 nights. Over 6.5 million euros in money raised by the tourist tax has been used for projects to diversify tourism, foster responsible tourism and promote sport, gastronomy and cultural activities.

With over 5,438,000 overnight stays, Barcelona was the top urban destination in Spain in terms of the volume of stays. International tourism still accounts for most of this with 84% of all hotel stays in the city, but there has been a notable rise in domestic and local tourism, with overall numbers here rising in comparison with 2019 and showing 340 thousand national visitors coming to Barcelona in the summer. The accumulative number for the current year gives 6.4 million visitors and nearly 20 million overnight stays in hotels and tourist accommodation.

Some 60.4% of visitors in August were men, under the age of 34 (55.1%), from abroad (85.4%), travelling with partners (41.7%) and visiting for leisure (76.1%).

France accounted for the highest number of international visitors with over 107 thousand tourists staying in city hotels, followed by the USA, with over 70 thousand, and the UK and Italy, with over 54 thousand each.

Increase in spending and the impact of tourism

Tourists spent an estimated 1,915 million euros in the summer months, tripling the figure for last year. In terms of spending recorded through credit card payment terminals in the city, the recovery of tourist services, including restaurants, accommodation and hospitality, comes out 33.9% above the figure for 2019.

  • Labour market: 47.5% of contracts were permanent in the tourist sector this summer, with 20,470 signed in all. This percentage was just 9.6% in 2019.
  • Transport: the port recorded 900 thousand cruise ship visitors, some 19.6% fewer than in the summer of 2019, and the airport recorded 12,962,385 passengers, a drop of 18.4% compared to 2019 (15,876,816), but practically doubling the figure for last summer (6,500,256).
  • Municipal museums: these regained 86.6% of the visitors they had in 2019, and the volume is 87.6% higher than in 2021. In all, 237,623 people visited museums in the city in the summer.
  • Park Güell: recorded a 50% rise in visitors compared to the summer of 2019, with 1,419,026 people visiting the site between June and August.

Money from the tax on overnight stays in tourist establishments goes to the districts

The last year has seen 6.7 million euros from the tourist tax go to tourist development projects in different districts and the promotion of important sports, gastronomy and cultural activities for projecting the city internationally and attracting quality tourism.

The latest package, approved last week by the Government Commission, will see over two million euros go to the following tourist development projects:

  • Sants-Montjuïc: through an investment of 98,000 euros, the district will subsidise two projects. Firstly, Montjuïc 360º, an initiative to rediscover the park’s natural and historical heritage on foot, through the recovery of different spaces and old paths and improved conservation. Secondly, the spatial organisation and use of the Meeting Point, located in C/ Creu Coberta and managed by the local retailers’ association.
  • Les Corts: a sum of 92,000 euros will be invested here in various actions, such as the renovation of the Panteó dels Repratiats d’Ultramar and funding for an initiative with the hotel sector to improve and reduce the generation of waste, part of the existing project in the district to favour responsible and inclusive tourism and commerce.
  • Gràcia: the district will invest 85,000 euros in the project “Nous itineraris turístics del Barri del Coll”, which includes 11 unique tourist points.
  • Nou Barris: will have 67.250 euros for two cultural projects: one is the continuity of the urban art lab in Nou Barris, an action plan to promote and support urban artists in the Zona Nord area in the district, and the other is the Nou Barris Flamenco Festival, held in the district since the year 2000.
  • Sant Martí: the tax will provide 175,000 euros in funding for the programme “Cultura al carrer“, which will bring family activities, circus shows, dance, theatre and music to the neighbourhood of El Besòs i el Maresme.
  • Ciutat Vella: the district will invest 82,000 euros in comprehensive work which includes a study and a map of routes for groups of tourists, allowing for an accurate analysis and map of their origins, itineraries and busiest stopping-off points.

A sum of 300,000 euros is reserved for investment in projects at a district level and geared towards creating an action plan for the coming years, based around tourist mobility and defining management scenarios for administering tourist flows in the city.

Approval has also been given for a package to promote initiatives promoting the city internationally in various spheres, such as sports, culture, restaurants and festivals like The World’s 50 Best Bars 2022, the International Show-Jumping Competition 125th Anniversary at the Reial Club de Polo de Barcelona, the World Padel Tour Masters Final, Fonograma – Setmana de la Música Feta a Catalunya and more.