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Developments in the balance of travel services: February 2020

22/04/2020 - Press Releases

Balance of travel services

Based on provisional data, the balance of travel services in February 2020 posted a surplus of €74 million, compared with a surplus of €33 million in February 2019. More specifically, travel receipts in February 2020 rose by 21.1% to €240 million, from €199 million in February 2019, while travel payments also increased by 1.0% (February 2020: €167 million, February 2019: €165 million). The rise in travel receipts was due to a 24.6% year-on-year increase in inbound traveller flows, as average expenditure per trip declined by 2.5%. Net receipts from travel services offset 4.1% of the goods deficit and accounted for 18.9% of total net receipts from services.

In January-February 2020, the balance of travel services showed a surplus of €154 million, up from a surplus of €97 million in the same period of 2019. This development is attributed to an increase, by 22.9% or €98 million, in travel receipts, which were only partly offset by travel payments that grew by 12.3% or €41 million. The rise in travel receipts resulted from a 1.0% rise in average expenditure per trip and by a 21.8% increase in inbound traveller flows. Net receipts from travel services offset 4.1% of the goods deficit and accounted for 19.9% of total net receipts from services.

Travel receipts

In February 2020, as mentioned previously, travel receipts rose by 21.1% year-on-year. In more detail, receipts from residents of EU27 countries fell by 11.6% to €82 million, whereas receipts from outside the EU27 rose by 50.6% (February 2020: €158 million, February 2019: €105 million). The lower receipts from within the EU27 were due to decreases in receipts from euro area residents by 6.1% to €66 million (February 2019: €70 million) and in receipts from residents of non-euro area EU27 countries by 29.4% to €16 million. Among major countries of origin, receipts from Germany fell by 21.3% to €18 million and receipts from France decreased by 42.2% to €5 million. Turning to non-EU27 countries, receipts from the United Kingdom decreased by 46.3% to €13 million, receipts from the United States increased by 83.1% to €28 million and receipts from Russia fell by 14.2% to €3 million.

In January-February 2020, travel receipts totalled €527 million, up by 22.9% relative to the same period of 2019. This development was driven by a 43.3% increase in receipts from residents outside the EU27, which came to €328 million, as receipts from residents of EU27 countries remained broadly unchanged at €198 million. In particular, receipts from euro area residents rose by 15.2% to €168 million, whereas receipts from residents of non-euro area EU27 countries fell by 42.8% to €30 million. Specifically, receipts from Germany decreased by 8.1% to €43 million and receipts from France decreased by 44.6% to €9 million. Turning to non-EU27 countries, receipts from the United Kingdom rose by 12.8% to €47 million, receipts from the United States increased by 86.9% to €55 million and receipts from Russia decreased by 56.6% to €5 million.

Inbound traveller flows[1]

The number of inbound visitors in February 2020 rose by 24.6% year-on-year to 627 thousand. Specifically, visitor flows through airports increased by 19.5% and visitor flows through road border-crossing points increased by 35.7%. This overall increase in flows was due to higher visitor flows from both within the EU27 (up 27.5%) and outside the EU27 (up 22.2%). In greater detail, the number of visitors from within the euro area rose by 22.9% to 163 thousand and visitors from non-euro area EU27 countries increased by 34.2% (February 2020: 125 thousand, February 2019: 93 thousand). Specifically, the number of visitors from Germany rose by 15.1% to 46 thousand, whereas visitors from France fell by 36.3% to 9 thousand. Turning to non-EU27 countries, visitors from the United Kingdom fell by 46.4% to 29 thousand, visitors from the United States increased by 53.5% to 29 thousand and visitors from Russia decreased by 42.5% to 5 thousand.

In January-February 2020, the number of inbound visitors rose by 21.8% year-on-year to 1,417 thousand (January-February 2019: 1,164 thousand). Specifically, visitor flows through airports increased by 25.0% and visitor flows through road border-crossing points increased by 19.6%. In the period under review, the number of visitors from within the EU27 rose by 15.4% year-on-year to 660 thousand and visitors from outside the EU27 increased by 28.0% to 758 thousand. Visitors from within the euro area rose by 28.0% and visitors from non-euro area EU27 countries increased by 0.7%. Specifically, the number of visitors from Germany increased by 4.9% to 113 thousand, whereas visitors from France fell by 23.8% to 19 thousand. Finally, turning to non-EU27 countries, visitors from the United Kingdom increased by 9.7% to 101 thousand, visitors from the United States rose by 39.7% to 62 thousand and visitors from Russia fell by 5.2% to 18 thousand.

Note: The next Press Release on “Developments in the balance of travel services” for March 2020 will be published on 22 May 2020.
 


[1] Inbound traveller flows exclude cruise passengers (other than those recorded in the Border Survey).

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