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Italian Tourism Will Recover Within Three Years

News Italy is a famous tourist destination with guests from all over the world. Just like most countries, Italy is experiencing problems with tourist arrivals due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is early to make assumptions regarding the loss but the drop in arrivals will be at least 50% or higher in 2020. According to the information published by Italian National Tourist Board (ENIT), both domestic and international tourism in Italy will be cut at least in half this year, and the country will be able to reach levels of 2019 only in 2023.

As in many other countries, experts think that domestic travel will recover faster and will help the local hospitality industry. Last year, Italy welcomed 57 million domestic and international tourists. It will take a few years to return to this volume, and the metric will be exceeded by 1% only in 2023. That being said, ENIT thinks that the growth will be reached mostly thanks to the growth in domestic tourists. The number of international arrivals in 2023 will be still 5% below the level of 2019.

It is hard to overestimate the importance of tourism for Italy. This industry contributes to the country’s economy even more than tourism in such established tourist destinations as France and Spain. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, the contribution of tourism to the GDP of Italy is expected to fall from 5.7% in 2019 to 3.2% in 2020. Even though the decline is significant, it is still below the result of other European countries. France and Spain had declines in the contribution of tourism to GDP of 4.5% and 3.1% respectively.

The latest information update states that the decline in overnight international visitors is expected to reach 58% or 37 million people in 2020. The decline in the number of overnight stays in Italy is even more significant – minus 126 million compared to 2019. The domestic market has a lower decrease of 31% or 16 million visitors. The total number of overnight domestic stays is expected to be by 46 million less than a year ago.

ENIT also asked Italians about their vacation plans for this year. It looks like hotels in Emilia Romagna, Sicily, and Puglia got the most attention from domestic tourists. 9% of Italian vacationers chose these destinations. That being said, only a bit more than half of the country’s population (59%) could spend at least one day away from home this year while 49% of the respondents didn’t have any vacation at all.


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