In August 2019, the number of trips of Bulgarian citizens abroad decreased slightly from the record high in July, but the visits of foreigners to our country reached a new historical peak, data from the National Statistical Institute (NSI) show.
Last month's trips of Bulgarians abroad increased by 2.5% yoy to 755.4 thousand (compared to August 2018), slightly lower than the record 779.5 thousand trips abroad a month earlier ( in July 2019).
The strongest increase in the trips of Bulgarians abroad compared to the previous year was recorded in the direction of Austria (by 21.4%), followed by Spain (by 16.5%), the Czech Republic (by 10.1%), France (by 8.9%), Serbia (by 7.8%), Greece (by 6.2%), Romania (by 3.4%) and others, while at the same time reducing the trips of Bulgarian citizens to Italy ( decrease by 13.0%), Turkey (by 4.3%), the United Kingdom (by 3.6%), the Republic of Northern Macedonia (by 2.4%), Germany (by 1.9%) and others.
In August the largest number of Bulgarian citizens traveled to Greece (207.6 thousand), followed by Turkey (136.0 thousand), Republic of Northern Macedonia (52.3 thousand), Serbia (4.94 thousand.0, Romania (47, .4 thousand), Germany (46.2 thousand) and others.
The August trips of Bulgarians abroad for the purpose of rest and excursion amount to 45.7% of the total share, followed by trips for other purposes (visiting, training, attending cultural and sporting events) - 40.3%, while trips for business purposes account for 14.0% of the total.
At the same time, the number of foreign visitors to Bulgaria increased by 3.8% in August compared to a year earlier, reaching a record 2.3252 million, thus exceeding the previous historical peak of 2.2402 million, reported at the end of the summer tourist season last year (in August 2018).
Visits of foreigners to our country for the purpose of rest and excursion increased in August by 7.6% on an annual basis.
The share of EU citizens from the total number of foreigners who visited our country last month reached 62.1%, or 3.6% more than in the eighth month of 2018.
The number of visits by Romanian citizens increased (by 30.9%), the United Kingdom (by 17.8%), Spain (by 15.8%), Austria (by 5.45), Hungary (by 4.3%) and others, while visits from Germany decreased (by 12.7%), Belgium (by 5.8%), the Netherlands (by 5.5%), the Czech Republic (by 4.2%), Poland (by 3,5%) and others.
In August, an increase of 3.3% was registered in the visits of citizens from the group "Other European countries", with the largest increase of 23.6% reported in the visits to our country of citizens from Ukraine, according to NSI data.
In August 2018, the share of visits to Bulgaria for rest and excursion purposes prevailed - 56.8%, followed by visits for other purposes - 35.8% and those for business purposes - 7.4%.
The highest number of visits to Bulgaria in August 2018 was made by Romanian citizens (as many as 373.1 thousand), followed by Turkey (290.4 thousand), Germany (251.0 thousand), Greece (163.7 thousand), Ukraine (122.0 thousand), Poland (110.8 thousand), the United Kingdom (97.4 thousand), the Russian Federation (97.1 thousand), Serbia (78.4 thousand) and France (69.7) thousands).