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Many Destinations in Europe Enjoy Double-Digit Growth in Summer 2018

News This summer was a definite success to many destinations in Europe, including Turkey, Malta, and Greece. These countries reported the double-digit growth in tourist arrivals despite such potential threats as political unrest and financial troubles. There are several important factors of such a growth, the most notable being higher European demand and improved air connectivity with China.

The latest “European Tourism – Trends & Prospects” report issued by the European Travel Commission only proves that this summer was really good for the European hospitality system. 32 out of 34 destinations analyzed had at least some growth, while 25% enjoyed a fantastic double-digit increase in the number of arrivals. In total, Europe welcomed 7% more foreign tourists in the first half of 2018.

Istanbul hotels, as well as hotels in other cities in Turkey definitely had a good summer as the total number of arrivals to the country added 23%. Greece and Serbia also showed tremendous results with the recorded growth of 19% and 15% respectively. In Serbia, the new visa-free policy boosted the number of guests from China. Valetta hotels and Malta in general keep benefitting from the European Capital of Culture 2018 title, thus attracting 16% more visitors. Finally, Iceland also had a strong summer this year and added 6% to the number of foreign visitors. This became possible mostly thanks to the steady demand from the US.

Such a popular tourist destination as Spain, however, posted a nearly flat result this summer (-0.1%). As Turkey and Northern Africa stabilize, tourists return to those markets, leading to a smaller number of guests in Spain. In general, economic volatility and trade wars didn’t prevent Europeans from traveling. Growing economy of the United States and stronger dollar made Americans more willing to travel abroad.

Chinese travelers, in their turn, are responsible for growing arrivals to several Balkan countries. 2018 is the year of the Turkey Tourism in China, resulting in a boost in the number of visitors of 87%. Chinese visitors also visited more frequently such countries as Serbia (+104%), Croatia (+41%), and Montenegro (+64%). The European Commission once again underlines the importance of the travel industry for the well-being of the European economy and encourages all companies operating in the industry to cooperate in order to offer better products and improve visitors’ satisfaction.


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