Barcelona, Spain (photo via Paul J. Heney)
New data shows the tourism industries for several major Mediterranean countries are experiencing a strong recovery period, despite record inflation and rising energy prices.
According to Reuters.com, government officials in Spain announced that nearly nine million passengers passed through the country’s international airports in August, a decline of just 13 percent from the same month in 2019.
Inflation is causing higher prices and tourism spending to increase, with Spain’s travel-related income of $11.16 billion being nearly two times larger than the total recorded last year during the same period. By the end of the year, Spanish officials expect tourism revenues to reach 98 percent of pre-pandemic levels.
“The spending on tourism is an indicator that measures how we managed to exit the pandemic by strengthening the quality of our tourism industry,” Spain’s Tourism Minister Reyes Maroto told Reuters.com.
The number of international travelers who visited Portugal beat pre-pandemic levels in July, and officials in Italy revealed that around 49 million tourists spent at least one night in a hotel during the June-August summer period, down just 6.9 percent from 2019.
As for Greece, the nation’s finance ministry predicted that tourism revenue would top $18 billion dollars, beating the previous record set in 2019. Net budget revenues for the first eight months of the year came in at $38 billion, thanks in part to higher-than-expected tourism receipts.
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