Between May and July, the number of overnight stays reached 39.5 million, which is the highest value since 1980, according to preliminary data from Statistics Austria. “In the first half of this year’s summer season, vacations in Austria were in greater demand than ever before,” says Tobias Thomas, Head of Statistics.
In 1980, with a good 40 million overnight stays in domestic accommodation establishments, the previous high was recorded – in the time corridor from May to July 2023 the sector only just missed the peak value at that time. The upturn in tourism is also clear in comparison with 2019, before the corona pandemic hit the country: this year, overnight stays were 1.7 percent above the level at the time. The jump in bookings is even greater at plus 6.3 percent compared to the same period last year, in which 37.16 million overnight stays were registered.
More than two thirds of the overnight stays in the first half of the tourist summer this year were due to foreign guests. But the desire of Austrians to go home has only been slightly curbed. The number of overnight stays by domestic guests fell by 2.2 percent to 11.96 million. In 2022, however, a corresponding record value was recorded.
Looking at the development by federal state, Vienna and Lower Austria stand out with increases of 19.8 and 10.2 percent in the number of overnight stays. There was also strong growth in Burgenland (plus 9 percent), in the tourist stronghold of Salzburg (plus 8.2 percent), in Vorarlberg (plus 7.2 percent) and in Upper Austria (6.2 percent). The plus was somewhat lower in Tyrol (4.9 percent) and minimal in Styria (0.7 percent). The only decrease was registered in Carinthia with 2 percent.
The development in July, traditionally the second most important summer month for tourism after August, is an indication of the overall positive trend. A good quarter of all overnight stays in the summer half-year usually fall in July. This year there were 18.7 million, 4.2 percent more than in July 2022. The number of guest arrivals in Austrian accommodation establishments has also increased (plus 5 percent to 5.56 million).
If you look at holidaymakers from abroad, there were brisk arrivals in July from the Czech Republic (plus 15 percent), Switzerland and Liechtenstein (both plus 7 percent) and Germany (plus 4.7 percent). On the other hand, guests from the Netherlands, the second-biggest market of origin, stayed 1.5 percent less often in Austria than in July last year.