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During the first quarter of 2023, locals took more trips abroad than any other year, surpassing the pre-COVID-19 record of 2019.

Between January and March, locals took around 158,180 trips, 16,146 more trips than 2019. The majority of the trips were undertaken for holiday purposes, while the rest took trips either to visit friends and family, for business purposes or for other reasons such as health, education, or religious tourism.

The drop in trips for business purposes may indicate the effect of the proliferation of online meetings that took place during the COVID-19 pandemic, reducing the need for in-person gatherings.

In total, locals spent 1,082,039 nights abroad, a 30 per cent jump compared to 2019, indicating that locals are not only travelling more, but they’re spending more time abroad than before. In fact, the average length of stay during the first quarter of 2023, was 6.8 nights, 1.2 more nights than the average length of stay prior to the pandemic.

Since local tourists are spending more time abroad, they’re spending more money overall, but the increase is disproportionate.

On a per capita basis, local tourists spent €832, which amounts to each spending €122 per night. While this is an increase from tourist spending €769 per capita prior to the pandemic, per night spending reduced from €136.

This may indicate that local tourists are opting for longer, but more cost-effective holidays in light of the rising cost of living.

Overall, locals spent €131.6 million euros abroad between January and March, a 16.7 per cent increase compared to 2019.

The majority of outbound tourists were between the ages of 25 and 44 years old, with more than a quarter aged between 45-64 years old.

The most popular destination was Italy, capturing 35.4 per cent of all trips. The UK came in second, being the final destination for 13.8 per cent of tourists, followed by Spain (6.3 per cent).

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