Catalonia welcomes over 2m foreign tourists in May for first time

Visitor spending up 8.3% to €2.3bn

Tourists admire the view of Barcelona from Montjuïc
Tourists admire the view of Barcelona from Montjuïc / Blanca Blay
Catalan News

Catalan News | @catalannews | Barcelona

July 3, 2024 11:40 AM

Catalonia welcomed 2.04 million foreign tourists in May 2024, the first time the figure has exceeded 2 million for that particular month. 

The number of visitors was 5.9% more than the May 2023, according to provisional data from Spain's National Statistics Institute, and 11.1% more than pre-pandemic figures (May 2019). 

International tourists spent a total of €2.32 billion, also a record for May and up 8.3% on last year. 

Average spending per person was €1,139, up 2.2%, while average spending per person per day was €246, a jump of 9.2%.   

Until now, 2 million monthly visitors had only been exceeded during the main summer months, between June and September, in some pre-pandemic years. The all-time record high (based on figures dating back to 2016) is 2.39 million in July 2016. 

The number of international tourists increased by 22.1% on April 2024 when 1.66 million foreign visitors were recorded. 

The €2.32 billion spent by foreign tourists in May was 28.5% more than in April. 

Tourists stayed for an average of 4.63 days in May, down from 5.15 days in May 2023 and from 4.94 days in April. 

Catalonia: top destination in Spain 

Catalonia was the top tourism destination in Spain for international visitors during the month of May, accounting for 22% of 9.26 million total visitors. 

The second-most popular destination was the Balearic Islands, with 1.99 million foreign tourists, followed by Andalusia, with 1.35 million. 

Catalonia also leads the way in visitors received to date this year (7.06 million), ahead of the Canary Islands (6.5 million).