Skanderbeg square in Tirana, Albania

Albania: Foreign tourists spent €1.5 bln in 9 months

Tourism in Albania show signs of recovery during the first nine months of the year; approaching pre-crisis levels, due to the good performance in the third quarter.

According to Bank of Albania, foreigners who traveled to Albania in the January-September period spent almost Euro 1.5 billion; double compared to the same period a year ago, when the country suffered the consequences of travel restrictions regarding Covid-19.

Compared to January-September 2019, which is the best historical year for tourism, expenditures of foreigners were about 10% lower. The best period of tourism this year is the third quarter; when Euro 786 million entered the country, with a slight increase of 0.5% compared to July-September period in 2019.

Other INSTAT Albania data show that for the 9-month period, 4.7 million foreign nationals entered the country; more than double compared to the pandemic year, but 10.7% less than in January-September 2019. The decline of tourists from Europe is replaced by the highest inflow of citizens from Kosovo. It increased by 18% compared to the first nine months of 2019.

Fewer departures

Kosovo citizens accounted for almost 50% of total inflows, from 37% in the same period 2019. While foreigners in recent years were spending more in Albania, also due to the increase of the number of tourists; Albanians also increased their spending abroad by making the net balance of earnings in tourism, although positive, to be at minimum values.

However, this year due to travel restrictions in many EU countries, departures have been fewer. The data of the Bank of Albania show that for the 9-month period, the expenditures of Albanians abroad amounted to Euro 801 million, which, although with a significant increase compared to the pandemic year, still remain 34% lower than for the 9-month period 2019.

The departure of Albanian citizens was 28% lower than the 9-month of 2019. Restricting the travel of local citizens, while foreigners had more freedom of movement made the balance of income; (the difference between the expenditures of foreigners in the country and those of Albanians abroad) are at the highest level since 2008, when the Bank of Albania reports data for inflows and outflows of tourism sector.

According to bank’s data, the country experienced a net earning from tourism of Euro 672 million in the review period, or 63% more than in JanuarySeptember 2019

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