In September, a new record of visitors from the United States to Portugal was broken, with more than 204,000 guests from the country arriving in Portugal.
According to data released by the National Statistics Institute (INE), this is the highest-ever number of North American tourists in national tourism accounts. The United States was the third outbound market in the country, positioning itself ahead of France and Germany and was only behind the United Kingdom, with 262,000 guests, and neighbouring Spain, with 213,000 guests.
Between January and September, Portugal received more than 1.1 million North American tourists, around 200,000 more compared to the same period in 2019. In other words, this market already has a weight of close to 10% in tourism in Portugal and was responsible for a share of 2.6 million overnight stays out of the total of 38.8 million overnight stays in the year.
"The focus that Turismo de Portugal has made in the North American market has yielded immense results, without any doubt. The Americans discovered us and discovered us with great force", said the executive vice-president of the Associação da Hotelaria de Portugal (AHP) in an interview with DN/Dinheiro Vivo.
The arrivals of these tourists from the other side of the Atlantic began to take on expression in the last two years prior to the pandemic. In 2019 alone, this market jumped 52 percent compared to 2017, with 2.7 million guests staying overnight in tourist accommodation on the mainland and islands.
Data from Turismo de Portugal, available until August, reveal that Lisbon is the destination of choice for North Americans, with 1.1 million overnight stays registered in the region in the first eight months of the year. In second place is the North region, with 393,000 overnight stays and completing the top three is the Algarve, which had 258,000 overnight stays from US tourists.