Portugal’s Travel and Tourism Industry Poised to Achieve Record-Breaking Year in 2023

Portugal’s tourism and travel industry is on its way to a record-breaking year in 2023.

According to the latest Economic Impact Research from the World Travel & Tourism Council, by the end of this year the tourism industry in the country will likely have exceeded its peak for 2019.

The report states that Portugal’s tourism sector will contribute 40.4 billion euro to the economy. This is equivalent to $45.4 billion. Portugal’s tourism industry generated approximately 40.1 billion euro or $45.06 Billion at its peak in 2019.

Portugal’s tourism sector is also booming. WTTC predicts that 30,000 new jobs will be created in Portugal’s tourism sector this year. This is approximately 68,000 short of the employment levels for 2019. The industry will employ approximately 950,000 people this year in Portugal.

The strong growth figures are in line with the information that was shared by Portugal’s Minister of State for Tourism Nuno Fazenda earlier this year.

Fazenda, who was visiting the United States at the time, told TravelPulse how Portugal’s tourism sector is slowly recovering following the COVID-19 epidemic.

The Journey to Recovery

Portugal’s travel industry has seen a consistent growth over the past few years. The sector’s contribution to the GDP grew by an incredible 61.6 percent last year. It reached nearly 38 billion euro or $42.7 billion. This figure was equivalent to 15.8 percent in the economy of the country.

Portugal’s tourism industry also made significant strides forward last year, adding 83,000 jobs to the total of 921,000. According to the latest reports by the global tourism organization, the sector is now at more than 90% of its pre-pandemic employment level.

Last year, international travelers began returning to Portugal to discover the country’s many attractions. Spain is the leading source of visitors to Portugal, with 16 percent. France (12 percent), UK (11%), Germany and U.S. (8 percent) are also amongst the top five.

In May, Fazenda told TravelPulse that U.S. tourists are quickly becoming an important segment of Portugal and the fourth most significant source of visitors.

Fazenda data showed that in 2022, the number of Americans visiting Portugal increased by 27 percent and their spending grew by 51 per cent. The increase of U.S. tourists continued to grow in the first months of 2023. In just January and February of this year, the number U.S. tourists to Portugal increased by 26 percent.

The total amount of international visitor spending in Portugal between 2022 and 2025 is EUR21.7 billion (USD24.3 billion). This represents a remarkable growth year-over-year of 80.4%, which was only 7.7% behind the 2019 figures.

The travel and tourism industry in Portugal is experiencing a strong recovery with high visitor demand. The sector’s future is bright. The sector will exceed 2019 contributions by the end of the year. Over the next decade the growth will outstrip national GDP, creating 248,000 new positions, which represents one in four.

The Decade Ahead
Portugal is expected to have even better news in the future, according to the global tourism organization. By 2033, the country’s GDP contribution from tourism could even reach EUR56.4 billion ($63 billion). If this were to happen, the tourism sector would account for more than one fifth (21.1%) of Portugal’s economy.

Portugal’s tourism sector will employ more than 1.2 millions people in total, or one out of four workers in the country.






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