Tourism in Spain

Spain recorded a total of 82 million tourists in 2017, ranking 2nd in the world in absolute terms.

Without including the size of a country, such a ranking list may not be very meaningful. By putting the tourist numbers in relation to the population of Spain, the result is much more comparable picture: With 1.8 tourists per resident, Spain ranked 37th in the world. In Southern Europe, it ranked 7th.

Spain generated around 68.44 billion US Dollar in the tourism sector alone. This corresponds to 4.8 percent of its the gross domestic product.



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Development of the tourism sector in Spain from 1995 to 2017

The following chart shows the number of tourist arrivals registered in Spain each year. Anyone who spends at least one night in the country but does not live there for more than 12 months is considered a tourist. Insofar as the survey included the purpose of the trip, business trips and other non-tourism travel purposes have already been excluded. The number of people passing through within the same day, and e.g. crew members of ships or flights are also not considered as tourists in most countries. If the same person travels in and out more than once within the same year, each visit counts again.

Data in the chart are given in millions of tourists. The red line represents the average of all countries in Southern Europe.

Tourists per year in Spain

Revenues in tourism

In 1995, tourism revenues amounted to 27.37 billion USD, or about 4.5 percent of the gross national product. This corresponded to about 32.97 million tourists at that time and roughly 830 USD per person. Within 22 years, the country's dependence on tourism has increased slightly. In the last year of the survey, the revenue now amounts to 68.44 billion USD, accounting for 5.2 percent of the gross national product. Each visitor now spends an average of 837 USD for his holiday in Spain.

Annual receipts as percentage of the gross national product:
Tourism receipts in Spain per year

All data for Spain in detail

YearNumber of touristsReceipts% of GNPExpences per person
199532.97 m27.37 bn $4.5 %830 $
199634.03 m29.75 bn $4.6 %874 $
199739.55 m28.65 bn $4.9 %724 $
199841.89 m31.59 bn $5.1 %754 $
199945.44 m33.78 bn $5.3 %743 $
200046.40 m32.66 bn $5.5 %704 $
200148.57 m33.83 bn $5.4 %697 $
200250.33 m35.47 bn $5.0 %705 $
200350.85 m43.86 bn $4.8 %863 $
200452.43 m50.00 bn $4.7 %954 $
200555.91 m49.57 bn $4.3 %886 $
200658.00 m53.16 bn $4.2 %916 $
200758.67 m59.91 bn $4.0 %1,021 $
200857.19 m64.42 bn $3.9 %1,126 $
200952.18 m55.75 bn $3.7 %1,068 $
201052.68 m54.31 bn $3.8 %1,031 $
201156.18 m62.45 bn $4.2 %1,112 $
201257.46 m57.88 bn $4.3 %1,007 $
201360.68 m62.58 bn $4.6 %1,031 $
201464.94 m65.10 bn $4.7 %1,002 $
201568.18 m56.53 bn $4.7 %829 $
201675.32 m60.61 bn $4.9 %805 $
201781.79 m68.44 bn $5.2 %837 $


All data correspond to the information of the World Tourism Organization.