- The number of foreign visitors was the same in 2015 as it was in 2014, as 6.2 million trips were made to Estonia and around 1.3 billion euros were spent here
- Estonian residents made some 4 million trips to other countries, which was 3% more than in 2014, and they spent around 800 million euros abroad
The number of foreign visitors was the same in 2015 as it was in 2014, as 6.2 million trips were made to Estonia. Foreign visitors consumed around 1.3 billion euros of goods and services in Estonia.
The number of visitors from Finland was about the same as in the previous year, as was their share of all visits at 39%. The number of visitors from other European Union countries increased by an average of 6%1. The biggest growth was of 21% in the number of tourist visits from Austria, 17% in the number from Spain, and 15% in those from Germany, while 15% fewer tourists came from Portugal and 17% fewer from the Czech Republic.
One visit to Estonia in four was made from outside the European Union. The biggest fall was the drop of one quarter in the number of visitors from Russia, who made some 836,000 visits to Estonia altogether, accounting for 13% of the total. The number of visitors from the USA increased by 70%, mainly due to same-day visits, of which there were 90,000 more. The number of tourists from Asia has increased for several consecutive years, and their numbers increased by one third in 2015, though they account for only a small part of the total number of tourists.
The number of same-day visits increased by 5% and made up 55% of the total number of visits, while the number of tourists staying overnight was down by 5%. Some 70% of visitors on multi-day visits stayed with accommodation providers in Estonia, and they stayed for an average of 4.8 days, making the average visit 7% longer than in 2014.
Estonian residents made some 4 million trips to other countries, which was 3% more than in 20142. Visitors from Estonia to foreign countries spent an estimated 800 million euros there.
There was not much change from 2014 in the preferred travel destinations for Estonian residents, and the top ten destinations remained the same. Three quarters of those visits were made to the European Union. The number of visits to Finland was down 7%, while 5% more visits were made to the rest of the European Union, and those visits made up more than half of the total. There was a notable increase of 15% in the number of trips by Estonian residents to Austria, of 16% in trips to Croatia, 21% in trips to Italy and 68% in trips to Slovakia.
The growth of the previous year continued in trips to sunny destinations, with 30% more trips to the United Arab Emirates, 14% more to Greece, 22% more to Turkey and 6% more to Thailand. Egypt has been losing popularity as a travel destination for six years, and last year there were one quarter as many trips there as in 2009.
Trips to Russia stayed constant at 380,000 and the number of visits to other countries in the CIS increased by one third.
Single-day visits accounted for a little more than one quarter of the total, and there were 4% fewer such visits. There were 6% more multi-day visits by Estonian residents, but their average length remained constant at 4.6 days.
1 All comparisons have been drawn on an annual basis, if not indicated otherwise.
2 The number of trips abroad and the number of foreign countries visited are not the same, as one trip abroad may include visits to several different countries.
More detailed information can be found on the Eesti Pank website under International travel statistics. The methodology for collecting International travel statistics was designed by researchers at Eesti Pank and the University of Tartu in partnership with OÜ Positium LBS. The mobile positioning data are collected and processed by OÜ Positium LBS, which gets the data from the telephone network operators in an anonymised form so as to protect fully the privacy of the telephone users. Statistical methods for the use, processing and presentation of the data do not permit identification of any individual telephone or user and comply with the law on personal data protection. A more detailed description of the methodology can be found on the Eesti Pank website under International travel statistics.
Source: Bank of Estonia
Author: Tarass Snitsarenko, Eesti Pank Statistics Department