Up to 25% less: luxury tourists still spend less in Spain than in Italy or France

Purchases made by non-EU tourists in the luxury sector have grown by 164 % compared to 2019 data, boosting total spending on shopping tourism. This puts Spain as third European market share (16%), behind France and Italy (each accounting for 27% of the total share).

The data is part of the report The elite tourist from Global Blue, a company specialized in tax free (right that allows non-EU tourists to buy tax-free) for Fortuny CircleAccording to the study, “the luxury sector represents 50% of total spending in Spain in 2019.” tax freealthough it is still far from iconic markets such as France and Italy, which both account for 75%”. In fact, our country would still lag behind European countries in other factors, such as average per capita spending on purchases. tax free: In Spain it is 1.150 euroswhile the average of the European Union It is around 2.000 euros.

“Spain is gaining ground in luxury destinations,” he insisted. Ainara Anduezadirector of Global Blue Spain, who took the opportunity to reiterate the room for improvement for Spain: “We still have a long way to go if we compare ourselves with the great luxury destinations in France and Italy, but there is a growth opportunity very big”.

The key to why our two neighbouring countries stand out in elite tourism is found in the product offering, where the major luxury brands such as Gucci or Chanel are mainly of Italian and French origin. “There is a historical legacy “where they have championed luxury with these brands,” Andueza explains to EL MUNDO. “This remains in the mindset of other nationalities that are on the other side of the pond. So, when they come to Europe, they consider Europe to be a luxury destination, and especially France and Italy. It is difficult, in the short term, to break that gap.”

However, as the report shows, luxury is changing its meaning: “A new luxury is emerging, which is no longer so much luxury, but rather the exclusivity of the product,” explains Andueza, referring to craft brands, exclusive products “with a silent brand” or not so well-known worldwide. In Spain, this category of exclusive product represents a 5% within the luxury segmentwith a growth of 106% compared to 2019, and a very short distance from the value in Italy and France, of 6%.

The tourist profile

The report highlights how the nationalities of the main tourist-sending markets that spend the most in Spain have evolved following the Covid-19 pandemic.

The first significant change is that the flow of spending by Chinese tourists in Spain has not yet recovered: in 2019, tourists from China They supposed a 29% of total expenditure, while current data indicate a decline in its presence of up to 13%However, as Andueza explained, they still represent a significant investment (around 2,550 euros per buyer).

On the other hand, the weight of buyer tourists coming from Latin Americawhich currently represent a 30% of expenditure, as well as the North Americans, which double their pre-pandemic spending until 14% Current. Those from the Gulf countries have risen to 6% from 4% previously, a particularly attractive profile given their high spending potential, which the report estimates at €2,300 per buyer in Spain (although this spending remains limited compared to France, where the average spend is €5,550, and Italy with €3,700).

Regarding the tourist of Latin America65% choose Spain as a shopping destination, above the figures for Italy (16%) and France (12%). They are mainly from Argentina and Mexico. According to the report, Latin American travelers account for 30% of total spending on tax free In our country, with an average expenditure of 850 euros.

The report indicates that, taking into account the profile of the elite buyer who comes to Spain, 20% of spending comes from tourists. high-end buyerswho spend more than 20,000 euros on average, and whose influx has grown by 157% since 2019. Meanwhile, tourists tributaries (with an average expenditure of between 3,000 and 20,000 euros) represent 42% of total expenditure after growing by 150%. Finally, tourists aspirationalwith an average expenditure of less than 3,000 euros, account for 38% of expenditure after having increased their expenditure by 121% since before the pandemic.

Destination cities

By cities, Madrid It has become the second city in Europe that has most recovered spending in tax free when compared to the pre-pandemic period grow by 163% during this time. Only Lisbon surpasses it, with a growth of 177%.

This spending in Madrid has been boosted by phenomena such as the rise of business schools and the opening of five-star hotels. Barcelonaon the other hand, appears in fifth position with an increase of 116%. The presence of luxury tourists in shopping is still greater in Madrid (44%) than in Barcelona (42%), and according to the report, “the high-end buyer spends more in the capital (2,600 euros) than in Barcelona (2,400 euros).”

In addition, a profile of people comes to Barcelona youngest luxury touristanother of the report’s highlights: in the Catalan capital there is a significant presence of the Generation Z (18%) and even more of the generation millennials (42%). On the other hand, Madrid still belongs to a more senior buyer (13% presence of Generation Z and 37% of the millennials).

The report also highlights an upturn in coastal cities such as Ibiza, which has recovered in spending. tax free 467%; and Mallorca (227%) or Marbella (194%), “which are beginning to gain ground as a destination for shopping“.

“Spain is beginning to reap the rewards of the work that has been done in recent years, in terms of connectivity and promotion at source to attract high-impact tourists. We must take advantage of this good moment to make that qualitative leap that will allow us to be at the same level as our European competitors,” he said. Xandra Falconpresident of the Fortuny Circle, who was also present at the event.

By Editor

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