The Spanish tourism sector is facing the summer of recovery, but also the first of normality where the advances and digital trends accelerated by the pandemic will be shown in all their splendor. The changes are already notable: 78% of international tourists already use the internet to book their trips, specifically for aspects such as accommodation and the means of transport to reach the country, according to a study by Visa and Payment Innovation Hub.
The report, based on the opinion of 1,500 tourists, has focused on three of the main countries that send travelers to our country: France, the United Kingdom and the United States, confirming the trend towards paying by card. It will be used by 91% of those surveyed, the most being Americans (95%) and French (93%), followed by the English (86%).
The great acceptance of digital payments and security are the great advantages highlighted by those surveyed.
But what do tourists expect when they arrive in Spain? The report warns that their expectation of being able to make digital payments is skyrocketing. So much so that almost 80% of those surveyed expect to be able to pay digitally on all or almost all occasions in which they are going to make any payment. Specifically, they expect to be able to make digital payments in restaurants (73%) or in department stores (70%). The report appreciates a change in these expectations of acceptance of payments in the case of small local businesses (44%), in public transport (34%) or in private mobility (30%).
“Digitalization has a determining role in the recovery of tourism in Spain, where trade and urban mobility are fundamental pillars to attract quality tourism. In this sense, we are going to continue working with SMEs and administrations so that the digitization of payments becomes a reality, making the most innovative technology available to them”, highlights Eduardo Prieto, general director of Visa in Spain.
As for destinations, Catalonia, Madrid, and the Balearic or Canary Islands come out as the favorite places to travel this summer. By nationalities, Catalonia is positioned as the destination most chosen by the French (45%), Madrid by the Americans (58%) and the Canary Islands by the English (29%). While the favorite activities go through cultural visits (54%), beach leisure (43%) and natural spaces (42%).
The study also ensures that 80% of those surveyed had previously visited the national territory, especially in the case of France (89%) and the United Kingdom (90%). In addition, English (62%) and French (65%) tourists choose to have stays of less than a week, while 45% of Americans surveyed opt for a longer duration.