In 2021, the EU had an estimated total of 28.1 million bed places available across 597 000 tourist establishments. Italy and France accounted for slightly more than one third of the total available capacity, with 5.1 million bed places each. These Member States were followed by Spain (3.8 million bed places, representing 13% of the total) and Germany (3.5 million; 12%).
Compared with 2020, the year the COVID-19 pandemic started, the number of bed places and the number of establishments remained stable. However, compared with 2019, the number of bed places in 2021 was still -2% (28.8 million) and the number of establishments was even lower (-3%; total of 617 953 establishments).
This information comes from data on tourist accommodation published by Eurostat today. The article presents a handful of findings from the more detailed Statistics Explained article on tourism statistics – annual results for the accommodation sector.
Member States fuel intra-EU tourism market
Data for 2021 show that three-quarters (75%) of the 591 million nights spent by international guests in EU tourist accommodation were by tourists coming from other EU Member States, while 16 % were spent by tourists coming from other European countries (of which nearly half were UK residents). Compared with 2019, there were changes in the market segmentation most likely due to travel restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic, with a substantial increase of 15 percentage points (pp) in the number of nights spent by tourists from the other EU Member States and an 8 pp decrease in nights spent by tourists from other European countries.
Additionally, in 2021 only 8 % of nights spent by international guests were spent by tourists from other regions, compared with 16 % in 2019.
In 2021, tourists from North America represented 4 % of the total nights spent by international guests in EU tourist accommodations, while guests from Asia represented 2 %, Central and South America 1 %, Africa almost 1 % and Oceania 0.2 %.
For more information:
- Statistics Explained article on tourism statistics – annual results for the accommodation sector
- Database on tourism
- Dedicated section on tourism
- It should be noted that some countries apply data collection thresholds, which can imply that establishments with below-threshold number of bed places are not in the scope of observation for the capacity and occupancy data