In 2019, accommodation establishments in Finland recorded over 23 million overnight stays, of which foreign visitors accounted for around 7.1 million.
In 2019, accommodation establishments in Finland recorded over 23 million overnight stays, of which domestic tourists accounted for around 16 million and foreign tourists for 7.1 million. The foreign demand for accommodation services grew by 3.1 per cent and the domestic demand grew by 4.2 per cent compared with the previous year. The total demand for accommodation services grew in total by 3.9 per cent in 2019.
In 2018, the demand for accommodation services grew moderately after the strong growth in 2017. Also in 2019, there was growth every month except for March. In the early part of the year the demand grew the least, by under two per cent. In March, demand even declined by two per cent from the previous year. However, the growth percentages started rising rapidly and by May the growth compared to the previous year was already close on seven per cent. After this the growth was more even, typically between four and six per cent. From October the growth percentages declined and in December the growth was only close on two per cent. These figures are data from Statistics Finland’s statistics on accommodation establishments and they have been collected from accommodation establishments with at least 20 beds or caravan pitches with electricity connection.
Year-on-year changes in nights spent (%) by month 2019/2018
Russians were still the largest group of foreign tourists in Finnish accommodation establishments in 2019. A total of 821,000 overnight stays were recorded for them, which was nearly one per cent down on the year before. The share of Russians among all overnight stays by foreign tourists remained at 12 per cent in 2019 just like in 2018. Germans came second with good 662,000 overnight stays. Their overnight stays increased by 5.3 per cent year-on-year. Third most overnight stays were recorded for British tourists, 569,000. The number was four per cent lower than in 2018. British visitors were followed by Swedes whose number of overnight stays at accommodation establishments was 558,000. However, overnight stays by Swedish tourists decreased by 0.3 per cent compared with 2018.
Nearly 384,000 overnight stays were recorded for Mainland Chinese tourists, which made them the fifth largest group. Overnight stays recorded for French visitors increased by 14.1 per cent and totalled good 342,000 at accommodation establishments. Among the most important countries of inbound tourism to Finland, the biggest growth percentages came from Mainland China, France and Italy. Overnight stays by Mainland Chinese tourists grew by 15.6 per cent. Overnight stays by French tourists increased by 14.1 per cent and they amounted to good 342,000. The number of overnight stays by Italian visitors was 12.6 per cent up on the previous year, but their stays remained at around 180,000 nights.
Finnish accommodation establishments recorded altogether good 1.2 million overnight stays for Asians in 2019. Overnight stays by Mainland Chinese and Japanese visitors covered 50.3 per cent of all overnight stays of the whole of Asia. Nearly 883,000 overnight stays were recorded for the Nordic countries, which was 0.6 per cent up on the year before. Examined by continent, the biggest growth percentage came from Asia, 13.5 per cent. In all, 6.0 per cent more overnight stays were recorded for visitors from EU countries than in 2018, the number of nights rising to 3.2 million. Tourism from America increased by 8.9 per cent and overnight stays amounted to good 437,000. Overnight stays recorded for African visitors numbered nearly 30,000 in 2019, which was 3.3 per cent down from 2018.
Change in overnight stays 2019/ 2018, %
In Mainland Finland, the growth in overnight stays in 2019 was biggest in Southwest Finland, where 7.6 per cent more overnight stays were recorded than in 2018. In North Karelia, overnight stays went up by 7.3 per cent. In Kainuu, overnight stays grew by around four per cent, in South Savo 1.1 per cent and in Uusimaa by around 7.3 per cent. In South Karelia, overnight stays grew by six per cent, in Kanta-Häme 2.1 per cent and in Lapland by around 4.2 per cent. The biggest relative drop in demand was measured in Satakunta, where overnight stays decreased by 6.2 per cent. Overnight stays decreased in Päijät-Häme by six per cent and stays also slightly decreased in South Ostrobothnia and Central Finland compared with the previous year. In the other regions overnight stays increased slightly or remained on the same level as in 2018.
In absolute numbers, overnight stays in accommodation establishments increased most in Uusimaa, where good 478,000 more overnight stays were recorded, and in Lapland, where overnight stays grew by almost 126,000 from 2018.
The share of overnight stays by foreign visitors in all overnight stays was almost 46 per cent in the region of Uusimaa, and over 52 per cent in Lapland. The share of overnight stays by non-resident tourists in South Karelia was around 31 per cent. The share was around 21 per cent in Ostrobothnia and around 22 per cent in South Savo. In Uusimaa, Russians maintained their top position among all tourists. Accommodation establishments recorded around 277,000 overnight stays for them and good 259,000 for Germans. In Lapland, the biggest group of foreign visitors were British tourists for whom good 270,000 overnight stays were recorded.
In 2019, overnight stays by foreign visitors recorded in Europe was 0.5 per cent higher than in the previous year, while a growth of 3.1 per cent was attained for foreign visitors in Finland. In our neighbouring regions, the Nordic and Baltic countries, overnight stays by foreign visitors decreased by 1.7 per cent, while the growth amounted to 1.4 per cent in Central Europe. In Southern Europe, overnight stays remained on the same level. In the 2010s, overnight stays by foreign visitors in Europe have grown on average by around 4.6 per cent per year and in Finland on average by 3.9 per cent per year. In Finland, the development of overnight stays by foreigners was negative in 2014 to 2015.