Much has been made in the national press recently of the record number of foreign tourists coming to Spain during the month of August and in the whole of 2014 so far, but in the hotels of the Costa Blanca the success of the summer depends to a large extent on the domestic tourism market.
Figures published by the country’s central statistics unit show that a total of 1,25 million nights were spent in Costa Blanca hotels by Spanish visitors in August, accounting for over 60% of the total of 2.1 million nights, and that during the month the occupancy rate was 89.39%.
This makes the Costa Blanca by far the most popular destination for hotel visitors from other parts of Spain, with the second most popular area being Mallorca (0.42 million nights). It is noticeable, though, that the average length of stay of the 292,000 Spanish hotel guests in the Costa Blanca was only 4.62 nights, whereas in most of the other main destinations the equivalent figure was between 6 and 10 nights.
Within the Costa Blanca Benidorm was, as usual, the star performer, welcoming a total of 148,820 Spanish guests to its hotels (as opposed to only 90,531 non-Spaniards) for 740,000 nights. Again this makes it by far the leading summer resort in the domestic market – second-placed Palma de Mallorca received 30,000 Spanish guests – and in the hotel capital of the Costa Blanca the average length of stay in August was 5.56 nights. Occupancy in the town’s hotels reached 95.02%, the fifth highest in the country.
It is generally assumed by many that the health of the tourist sector in Spain depends on visitors coming to this country from overseas, but the Costa Blanca hotel figures come as a reminder that, at least during the main holiday month of August, domestic tourism is also very important. Across the country as a whole in August around half of all hotel guests were Spanish nationals, although the number of nights they spent in hotels was lower and accounted for only 38%. Among foreign visitors the British and Germans each accounted for around a quarter, and other well represented nationalities were the French (11%), Italians (6%) and Russians (5.5%).
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