Public perception of tourism improves

The public perception of tourism among people in Barcelona is almost back to the levels from 2019, before the Covid-19 pandemic. Some 70.9% of people believe tourism benefits the city, a rise of 4% compared to 2022, but the figure for those who feel it is harmful for the city is also up, from 17.3% to 23%, reaching 28.2% among people who indicate they live in a tourist neighbourhood.

03/02/2024 10:22 h

Ajuntament de Barcelona

According to the report “Perception of Tourism in Barcelona 2023”, this sector continues to be seen as the main source of wealth for the city. Some 56.6% of the city’s population see it as such, way ahead of any other sector, while 79.3% of people believe it generates economic opportunities and jobs for people in Barcelona.

Those with a perception of the negative side of tourism note that it pushes up prices and causes crowding in some parts of the city such as La Rambla, the Sagrada Família, Plaça de Catalunya, Passeig de Gràcia and the seafront, which some people surveyed have stopped going to as a result of the presence of tourism.

Some 14.2% of those interviewed stated that they were working in the tourist sector in 2023, an increase of 4% compared to 2022. The sustained growth in the number of people with permanent contracts has continued since the labour reform, accounting for 72.9%. The percentage of people who would prefer to work in a different sector is down from 75.5% to 59.5%. The main challenge for the sector is the difficulty workers face when it comes to work-life balance.

Some 61.5% of those surveyed believe the city is reaching the limit of its capacity in terms of receiving visitors, compared to 36.4% who believe it has to continue attracting more people. Some 21.5% of those interviewed think there is too much tourist accommodation in the city and 20.8% stated they have a tourist let in the same building.

People prefer tourists who come to the city for training, professional reasons and sports or culture, rather than cruise-ship tourists, with more people critical of the latter than in favour of them. Some 53.3% believe that people visiting the city behave well during their stay, while 27% think otherwise.

The fourteenth edition of this survey, conducted annually by the Department for Opinion Studies at the Municipal Data Office, endorses the City Council’s desire to go further in managing tourism in the city. The study was based on 1,859 surveys carried out between the spring and the autumn last year.

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