More foreigners, Italians travelling less


Rome – Foreign tourists are on the up and up in Italy, but Italians – going through an economic crisis – are travelling less, with 2007 seeing a sharp drop in surplus levels by almost a billion euros. Italian tourism is in a slump: in 2007 Italian hotels had 248.4 million guests, an increase of 0.1pct over 2006. These are the main figures seen in a Confturismo Confcommercio survey. “The market is clearly in a slump,” said Bernabo’ Bocca, chairman of Confturismo Confcommercio, “with the situation worsened by a loss of almost 1 billion euros in the surplus recorded from Italian tourism abroad and foreigners in Italy.” Foreigners renti9ng hotel rooms increased by 1.5pct to 109.5 million from 107.8 million in 2006, while those rented by Italians dropped by 1.1pct from 140.4 million in 2006 to 138.9 million. “Further growth of foreign tourism shows that our tourism sector is competitive, but the decline in the Italian component underscores the liquidity problems the country is experiencing.”