Malta’s hotels received a total of 1,621,660 guests in 2022, with four-star hotels capturing just under 50 per cent of all the guests. While the overall number of hotel guests was still below pre-pandemic levels, the number of people who opted for alternative collective accommodations such as guesthouses, hostels and tourist villages surpassed 2019 figures.  

A total of 191,174 guests opted for alternative accommodation instead of hotels in 2022, representing 28.7 per cent in growth compared to 2019.

As a result, the market share of alternative accommodation grew from 7.3 per cent in 2019 to 10.5 per cent in 2022.

The average length of stay stood at 4.59 nights per guest in 2022 in hotels, a decrease from 4.9 in 2019.

This trend is also reflected among guests who opted for alternative accommodation, with the average length of stay being 3.69 nights in 2022, down from 4.85 nights in 2019.

NSO: Collective Accommodation Establishments: Q4/2022

A growing number of domestic tourists

Curiously, the number of resident guests, i.e. people who live in Malta choosing to stay a few nights at one of Malta’s accommodation establishments, has grown almost consistently since 2019.

In 2019, there were a total of 60,261 resident guests in Malta’s establishments. While that number dipped to 56,268 in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic it quickly recovered to 63,766 in 2021, and continued growing to 68,533 in 2022.

This signals that Malta itself supplies a consistent and growing number of guests to its own hospitality sector.

In 2022, residents were responsible for seven per cent of all guests accommodation establishments received, staying 5.11 nights each and expressed a clear preference for hotels.

Conclusion

The number of guests staying in collective accommodations is still below figures for 2019, with a growing number of them opting to stay for a shorter duration of time. Meanwhile there is increasing interest in alternative accommodation such as guesthouses, hostels and tourist villages.

Contrary to that trend, however, residents are increasingly becoming a valuable and dependable source of custom for local accommodation establishments, spending more nights on average, and preferring to stay at hotels.

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