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Increasing numbers of tourists in Spain choosing rented accommodation over hotels

Profile Photo By: David Johns
October 7, 2013

Increasing numbers of tourists in Spain choosing rented accommodation over hotels

Spain beach Photo: Rainer Sturm  / Increasing numbers of tourists in Spain are opting to stay in rented accommodation rather than hotels when they visit for their holidays.

Statistics released by the Spanish Ministry of Industry, Energy & Tourism showed that the growth rate for tourists who chose to stay in forms of accommodation other than hotels was more than double that of those who opted to stay in hotels.

Currently, non-hotel accommodation accounts for 40 per cent of the market and with an increase of 8.6 per cent for the period January to July, it could suggest that holidaymakers are making other plans when it comes to choosing accommodation in a bid to leave more cash for spending money.

May led the way for the number of tourists who opted to stay overnight in non-hotel forms of accommodation ? such as holiday lets, campsites and rural housing ? with a 14 per cent increase on May 2012.

It’s been a record breaking year for tourism in Spain in 2013, with 34 million international visitors descending on the country so far ? a 2.9 per cent increase on 2012.

Britons have a renowned longstanding love affair for the sun and sangria of Spain and that is certainly not waning. The number of British tourists in Spain rose 3.4 per cent on last year between January to July and accounted for 23.3 per cent of all international visitors in this period.

French tourists were the second biggest group representing 16.1 per cent of all international visitors, while the Germans closely followed in third representing 15 per cent.

July was the most successful month in this period, pulling in just short of eight million overseas tourists, with Catalonia the most visited region followed by the Balearic Islands.

Package holidays, while being 10 per cent up in July compared to the other months this year, showed a decline of 1.3 per cent compared to July 2012.

It could be that this is another indicator that more tourists are shifting from staying in hotels to arranging their own accommodation, bearing in mind most package holidays include hotel accommodation.

Andalusia was the region which enjoyed the biggest increase in international visitors, experiencing an increase of 8.5 per cent totaling nearly one million tourists in July alone.

In terms of expenditure, Catalonia was the region that led the way gaining a 9.8 per cent increase in the amount foreign tourists spent between January to July.

It takes the total spend of international tourists in Catalonia to ?7.68bn, the highest out of any other region and accounting for 23.9 per cent of all foreign tourists’ expenditure for the year so far.

The average spend per tourist during their stay in Catalonia was ?878, a 4.4 per cent increase on last year while the average daily spend per tourist also rose by 1.2 per cent to ?123.

Perhaps there is a correlation between the increasing numbers of tourists opting to stay in non-hotel accommodation and the increase in tourist expenditure: hotels are generally more expensive leading to more people finding cheaper alternatives ? such as holiday rentals ? and the result is people have more spending power using the money they have saved by doing this.

No tourist wants to be left with less spending money due to a hotel bill, and with many unused homes forcing owners to rent them out at lower prices, the statistics indicate more tourists may look for non-hotel forms of accommodation in the future.

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