NON-EU visitors to Andalucia spend €160 million in the region’s stores each year – and 80% is spent in Malaga province.
According to the study by Global Blue, Malaga has ‘by far the most volume of premium travellers willing to spend’ in Andalucia.
The foreign shoppers are highly concentrated in exclusive areas like Puerto Banus and Marbella, where you find designer stores and large shopping complexes like La Cañada.
The report says, however, that Andalucia’s figures for high-flying tourists are still low in relation to the total number of tourists.
Around 9% of its visitors come from China, Russia and Morocco – whose residents usually spend more while visiting.
It added that ‘the lack of direct air connections with long-distance destinations is a burden for Sevilla’, since purchases ‘are concentrated in the last 48 hours of the trip, which demonstrates the importance of positioning ones self as a final destination and not just a place to pass through.’
On the other hand, the important network of international connections at Malaga airport largely explains the high concentration of spending by long distance tourists in the province.
Meanwhile, the company predicts that in the next five years the Chinese middle class will multiply by three.
“We are talking about a larger volume of travellers with a high purchasing power to whom it is necessary to attract. To achieve this, it is necessary to place Andalucia in its imaginary as a shopping destination, going beyond the sun and beach model,” said the report.
CEO of Global Blue Spain, Luis Llorca said: “Despite the satisfaction generated in certain sectors by the numbers of tourists who visit us, we must also take into account how much each traveler spends and assess the rate of return, that is, if the tourism activity generates sufficient revenue to the resident population.
“When per capita spending is only compensated by the arrival of more tourists, there is much to improve because the ideal is fewer travelers spending more.”