Europe Rebound Continues Into 2023

The European Travel Commission (ETC) is reporting that Europe’s tourism recovery is maintaining its momentum despite economic headwinds, reaching about 95% of 2019 levels of international tourist arrivals.

In its newly released report for the second quarter of 2023 — European Tourism: Trends & Prospects – the ETC found that though inflation and increased travel costs are squeezing consumers’ wallets, travel spending is still prioritized over other discretionary expenses.

In fact, the latest data available shows that one-quarter of reporting European destinations have surpassed pre-pandemic levels of foreign arrivals.

Miguel Sanz, ETC’s President, observed: “It is encouraging to see the positive recovery of international tourist arrivals in the first half of 2023. With this in mind, European destinations must be prepared to effectively manage the increased demand and return of travellers.”

Sanz continued: “Tourist strategies must embrace travel dispersal in order to support destinations in addressing overcrowding, while also spreading the benefits of tourism to less-travelled areas. Tourism can and should be leveraged as a social, economic, and sustainable force for good.”

The ETC report points out that this summer, many consumers will make their travel decisions with cost in mind, as weaker economic conditions put pressure on travellers’ budgets. Household finances and discretionary spending will remain strained going into the peak travel season in Europe (June to August), but this should not derail the overall recovery.

In fact, it said that travellers are still showing strong demand for travel despite economic woes. Considering this, it comes as no surprise that price sensitivity will continue to benefit destinations offering more value for money. Recent data up to May shows that value-for-money destinations are performing well, with Serbia (+27%), Bulgaria (+21%), Montenegro (+12%) and Türkiye (+9%) among those leading the recovery.

Go to for the full report.