Hotel Stays Down 3.5% in March

Spanish hotels recorded 17.4 million overnight stays in March this year, which represented a decrease of 3.5% over the same month of 2011, despite the prices falling by 0.3%, according to figures released by the National Statistics Institute on Monday.

The decline in overnight stays in March was due both to the drop in Spanish tourists in the third month of 2012 by 3.1%, as well as foreign tourists who cut their overnight stays in hotels by 3.8%.

The average stay decreased by 3% in March year-on-year, reaching three nights per traveller.

The Hotel Price Index (HPI) registered a decline of 0.3% in March. With regard to the profitability indicators of the hotel sector, turnover per occupied room reached an average value of 66.9 euros and revenue per available room stood at 33.4 euros.

As for occupancy rates, in March 44.6% of the places offered were filled, representing a decrease of 3.8% over the same month last year. Weekend occupancy rates stood at 49.3%, a drop of 7.7%.

Travellers from Germany and the UK accounted for 27.7% and 20.9%, respectively, of total overnight stays of foreigners in March. Specifically, the German market experienced a decline of 4%, while the British market grew by 2.1%.

Following on, overnight stays by travellers from France, Italy and Sweden fell 8.3%, 23.3% and 1.7% respectively. Meanwhile, as El Economista reported, the main destination for non-residents was the Canary Islands. In this community foreign overnight stays decreased by 7.2% over March 2011. This was followed by Catalonia, with a decrease of 5.9% year-on-year, and Andalusia, with an increase of 0.9%.

Andalusia, Valencia and Catalonia were the main destinations for travellers living in Spain, although they recorded decreases of 4.1%, 1.6% and 5.3% respectively.