The data is contained in the quick estimate of tourism activity released on 29 October by the National Statistics Institute (INE).
"The tourist accommodation sector recorded 2.1 million guests and 5.6 million overnight stays in September 2021, corresponding to increases of 52.3 percent and 58.4 percent, respectively (+35.5 percent and +47.9 percent in August, in the same order)," INE's highlight can be read.
According to the institute, the levels reached in September were, however, lower than those observed in September 2019, before the Covid-19 pandemic, with the number of guests and overnight stays decreasing by 28.9 percent and 26.6 percent, respectively.
In September, the domestic market contributed 2.6 million overnight stays and increased by 26.8 percent, continuing to exceed the levels of the same period of 2019 (+15.6 percent).
Non-resident overnight stays, meanwhile, doubled compared to September 2020 (+100.7 percent) to three million, but were about half of those recorded in September 2019 (-43.9 percent), INE indicates.
In the 3rd quarter, overnight stays fell 30.7 percent compared to the same period of 2019, having registered an increase of 15.8 percent in residents and a reduction of 52.6 percent in non-residents.
Compared to the 3rd quarter of 2020, there were increases of 57.1 percent, with rises of 31.5 percent in residents and 102.4 percent in non-residents.
"The overnight stays recorded in the first nine months of 2021 have already exceeded the value recorded for the whole of 2020," highlights INE, indicating that in this period, total overnight stays increased by 19.5 percent, with growth of 28.7 percent in residents and 9.4 percent in non-residents.
The institute also indicates that the number of nights spent by residents up to September grew in all regions, highlighting the autonomous regions of Madeira, with a year-on-year increase of 109.9 percent, and the Azores, with 96.3.
The nights spent by non-residents only decreased in the Lisbon Metropolitan Area (-6.1 percent). On the other hand, in the Azores there was an increase of 127.1 percent.
Compared to the same period of 2019, overnight stays decreased by 54 percent, with a reduction of 14.4 percent in residents and a 71.2 percent drop in non-residents.
According to INE, in September, 19.5 percent of tourist accommodation establishments were closed or recorded no guest movement, compared to 17.4 percent recorded in August.
In September, the British market accounted for 19.1 percent of total overnight stays by non-residents, followed by the German (share of 13.2 percent), Spanish (12.4 percent) and French (10.5 percent) markets.
In the first nine months of 2021, the main increases were registered in the Polish (+160.7 percent), Irish (+111.7 percent), Belgian (+60.7 percent), Swiss (+51.3 percent) and French (+38.2 percent) markets.
The greatest decreases were seen in the Chinese (-74.6 percent), Canadian (-73.6 percent), Brazilian (-57.7 percent) and Russian (-53.3 percent) markets.
The average stay in tourist accommodation establishments (2.72 nights) increased 4 percent in September, compared to 9.2 percent in August.