Italy's attractions resistant to economic, financial crisis

Tourists spending more in Italy, according to central bank

12 December, 18:39

(ANSA) - Rome, December 12 - ANSA) - Rome, December 12 - Italy's charms appear somewhat resistant to the economic and financial crisis, as international tourists spent almost 3% more in the country this year, the Bank of Italy said Wednesday.

Worldwide economic woes put a damper on the number of foreign tourist arrivals in Italy, which fell by 1.6%, or about 543,000 fewer arrivals in 2012, the central bank said in a new report.

And overnight stays also fell by 1.8%, or about 2.4 million visitors. However, those who came to Italy certainly spent, as the tourism sector recorded a 2.9% increase in revenues - about 22.556 million euros. These findings are in line with the results of year-end monitoring by national tourism agency ENIT, which also reported that Italy is attracting more and more Russian, American, and Japanese tourists. Bookings from the United States are expected to increase by 5% to 15% Interest in Italy is also very high among Brazilians, the ENIT survey found.

Tour operators are optimistic for a healthy Christmas, reporting rising booking for the holidays in Rome, Venice and Florence.

Other prime vacation spots include northern Italy's mountain areas, favoured by Germans in particular, and other European visitors. (ANSAmed).

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