Portugal’s foreign tourism records best-ever first half

Portugal's foreign tourism records best-ever first half

Portugal Welcomes Record Number of Tourists in First Half of 2022


LISBON, Aug 14 (ANBLE) – Portugal has experienced an impressive surge in tourism in the first half of 2022, with over 8 million foreign tourists visiting the country. This marks the highest number of visitors in the first half of the year, according to official data released by the National Statistics Institute. The data also shows a significant increase compared to the same period in 2021 and the pre-pandemic year of 2019.

Tourism is a vital pillar of Portugal’s economy, accounting for almost 15% of the country’s gross domestic product before the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted global travel. The strong rebound in the tourism sector is an encouraging sign for the country’s economic recovery.

One of the standout trends is the growing number of visitors from the United States. In June alone, the United States represented the second-largest group of foreign visitors, indicating a significant increase in tourism from this market. This is a positive development for Portugal, as the United States has emerged as a key source of tourism revenue.

The data also reveals that visitors from the United Kingdom comprise the largest share of total arrivals in the first half of the year, with over one million visitors. The Spanish market closely follows, indicating the strong connection between the Iberian neighbors. This demonstrates Portugal’s appeal as a destination for both neighboring European countries and long-haul travelers.

The hotel sector has experienced a surge in occupancy, with a recorded 13.6 million guests in the first half of the year. This includes both international and domestic travelers. Furthermore, total hotel revenues have increased by an impressive 32% year-on-year, reaching 2.5 billion euros ($2.73 billion). These figures highlight the significant economic contribution of the tourism industry to Portugal’s recovery.

In addition to the influx of tourists, Portuguese airports have also witnessed a substantial increase in passenger traffic. Compared to the same period last year, the number of passengers who traveled through Portuguese airports in the first half of this year has surged by almost 30%. Moreover, when compared to the first half of 2019, there has been a 12% increase in passenger volume. This surge in air travel aligns with the rebound of international travel, which has reached approximately 90% of pre-pandemic levels, with Southern Europe leading the recovery, according to the International Air Transport Association.

Overall, Portugal’s record-breaking tourism numbers in the first half of 2022 signify the country’s resilience and attractiveness as a destination. The strong recovery in the sector is not only a positive sign for the country’s economy but also a reflection of the enduring appeal of Portugal’s rich culture, beautiful landscapes, and warm hospitality. As travel restrictions continue to ease around the world, Portugal remains positioned as a top choice for travelers seeking memorable experiences and relaxation. The country’s success in navigating the challenges of the pandemic and enticing visitors back is testament to its enduring appeal as a tourism hotspot.

($1 = 0.9142 euros)