May’s tourist departures up by 15.1% on last year – NSO

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May's tourist departures up by 15.1% on last year - NSOTourstat data for May showed a significant increase of 15.1 per cent in total departing tourists when compared to the corresponding month last year. Total expenditure went up by 21.2 per cent to €133.7 million.

Total departing tourists during May were estimated at 155,771. Excluding the 405 passengers who stayed overnight on board a berthed cruise vessel, 155,366 were departing tourists – an increase of 16 per cent.

The absolute majority of departing tourists, 133,070 or 86 per cent, visited Malta for holiday purposes, while another 12,539 trips were undertaken for business purposes.

First-time visitors made up the majority of inbound tourists, and increased by 16 per cent over 2012. As in previous months, most inbound tourists came from EU Member States, while tourists from non-EU countries advanced by 32 per cent.

At 28 per cent, the UK remained the main market for inbound tourism, while the Italian market came second at 12 per cent. Both British and French markets registered increases of 8 and 25 per cent respectively when compared to last year.

Total nights spent went up by 21 per cent, reaching 1,119,468 nights. In absolute terms, the majority of guest nights were spent in collective accommodation establishments. However in percentage terms, a substantial increase was noted in the number of tourists opting for private accommodation.

The average length of stay stood at 7.2 nights, up by 0.3 nights when compared to May 2012. The total expenditure was estimated at €133.7 million, up by 21 per cent over the corresponding month last year.

Expenditure on package travel went up by 17 per cent, while non-package expenditure advanced by 36 per cent.

Total tourists who visited Malta between January and May were estimated at 507,044. Of these, 504,155 were departing tourists – an increase of 10 per cent over the comparable period last year.

Most departing tourists were holiday makers, predominantly from the euro area. However, an increase of 14 per cent was registered in tourists from non-EU countries. Non-package travel was slightly higher than package travel, with an estimated 52 per cent of departing tourists opting for this kind of travel. Nonetheless, package travel went up by 9 per cent when compared to 2012 levels.

Total nights spent by departing tourists during the first five months this year went up by 13 per cent, exceeding 3.6 million. The majority of guest nights were spent in collective accommodation establishments, where an increase of 8 per cent was reported. The average length of stay stood at 7.3 nights, up by 0.2 of a night over 2012.

During the period under review, total tourist expenditure was estimated at €399.1 million, 12 per cent higher than 2012. Increases were recorded across all expenditure categories. Total per capita expenditure increased to €792.

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