MURCIA Region is showing indications that it is having the best year for international tourism since 2009.
Foreign tourists who visited the region increased seven per cent in the first six months, representing 359,256 tourists. This is the biggest influx of international tourism in recent years and exceeds the best record so far, dating back to 2009 with 357,441 tourists.
The Minister of Economic Development, Tourism and Employment, Juan Hernandez, said: “The first data from the summer campaign finds that the first-half growth continues, and we expect an occupancy of two million domestic and international tourists in July and August, 10 per cent more than last summer.”
Regarding this summer season, hotel occupancy for the month of July along the coast was 82 per cent, nine points higher than in July 2014. Occupancy also rose in city hotels, at 49 per cent (up five per cent on 2014) and in spa hotels where occupancy reached 81 per cent (eight per cent more than 2014).
The Tourism Minister stressed that to maintain this positive momentum throughout the year “we are acting on the diversification of tourism products and markets, to have an increasingly varied and attractive offer to help reduce the degree of seasonality.” Hernandez added: “The objective is to promote tourism throughout the year; so that it can generate more jobs in the sector and that they have greater stability.”
The data relating to non-hotel accommodation – in apartments, campsites and rural tourism – also showed positive figures, with an increase of 8.8 per cent over the previous year. The airports of San Javier and Alicante were the main path of arrival for tourists, bringing over 86 per cent of them.
As for the origin of foreign tourists during the first half of 2015, Britain was the main source of tourists to the region, contributing 50.1 per cent of the total and an increase of five per cent over the previous year.
The daily average spending of foreign tourists in the first six months of the year reached €83.20, representing an increase over the same period in 2014 of 3.3 per cent.