Back

ETC publishes new quarterly report

European Tourism Shows Modest Growth in 2016

Brussels, 8 February 2017 – European tourism demand continues to grow and proves resilient to safety and security challenges and political turmoil. Overall growth, however, has slowed from the previous year (+5% in 2015) affected by those destinations required to rebuild market confidence following tragic events. The most visited region in the world welcomed 620 million international tourist arrivals in 2016, a 2% increase compared to the same period in 2015 .

According to the European Travel Commission’s latest report, “European Tourism – Trends & Prospects”, the majority of destinations reported healthy growth in the last months of 2016. Iceland remains the top growth destination (+40%) followed by the outstanding performance of Cyprus (+20%) and Slovakia (+19%) owing to improved air connectivity and off-season visitation. Bulgaria (+16%) also saw robust growth while other destinations such as Serbia and Portugal (both +13%) are increasingly becoming appealing for bargain hunters. On the contrary, safety and security concerns weigh down on visitor numbers in Turkey (-31%) and Belgium (-14%) while a strong Swiss Franc weakens Switzerland’s tourism performance (-2%).

“European destinations acknowledge the need to remain competitive in a sector that is swiftly adapting to the diverse needs of travellers from both established and emerging markets. Only through increased commitment and cooperation from the European tourism authorities will Europe remain a competitive destination and will succeed in fostering inbound travel” said Eduardo Santander, Executive Director of ETC.


Europe's Large Source Markets Continue to Drive Growth

European travel remains heavily reliant on intra-regional demand. Several destinations reported double-digit growth from Germany and France, attributable to stable economic conditions in the Eurozone. In the UK, a weaker pound failed to deter travel demand, with almost one in two European destinations reporting double-digit growth from this market. Visitor arrivals from Russia are gradually improving with significant increases recorded in the Mediterranean and the Baltic destinations. Russian tourist flows are expected to grow throughout 2017 as the rouble strengthens.

US arrivals to Europe increased by 8% (some 27.4 million) in 2016 helped by a strong dollar, encouraging economic conditions and favourable airfares. However, it remains to be seen whether this trend will continue due to the new US administration’s retrenchment from globalism. Overall, Chinese growth (+2%) has slowed down from 2015, as safety concerns dissuades travel to Europe.

The full report can be downloaded here.

The press release can be accessed here.

Please insert
your NAME & EMAIL
Thank you.

Thank your for subscribing to our ETC Bulletin. You'll now automatically receive the new releases.

Thank you for your order!

You will soon receive an invoice for your order.
Once your payment has been received, ETC will send you either a watermarked copy (as a PDF document)
or a printed version of the study you have ordered by surface mail.

Would you have 20 seconds to answer to a short question ?

Thank you for your message

We appreciate that you have taken the time to write us. We will get back to you very soon.

Thank you for your message

We have received your enquiry and will respond to you as soon as possible. For urgent enquiries please call us on one of the telephone numbers below.

For our records, please tell us if you are one of the following