Occupancy of tourist accommodation establishments (tour_occ)

Reference Metadata in Euro SDMX Metadata Structure (ESMS)

Compiling agency: Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union

Eurostat metadata
Reference metadata
1. Contact
2. Metadata update
3. Statistical presentation
4. Unit of measure
5. Reference Period
6. Institutional Mandate
7. Confidentiality
8. Release policy
9. Frequency of dissemination
10. Dissemination format
11. Accessibility of documentation
12. Quality management
13. Relevance
14. Accuracy
15. Timeliness and punctuality
16. Comparability
17. Coherence
18. Cost and Burden
19. Data revision
20. Statistical processing
21. Comment
Related Metadata
Annexes (including footnotes)

For any question on data and metadata, please contact: EUROPEAN STATISTICAL DATA SUPPORT


1. ContactTop
1.1. Contact organisation

Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union

1.2. Contact organisation unit

G3: Short-term Business Statistics and Tourism

1.5. Contact mail address

2920 Luxembourg LUXEMBOURG

2. Metadata updateTop
2.1. Metadata last certified10/02/2014
2.2. Metadata last posted10/02/2014
2.3. Metadata last update10/02/2014

3. Statistical presentationTop
3.1. Data description

National data

Monthly and annual data on arrivals, nights spent and occupancy rates at tourist accommodation establishments.

Regional data

Annual arrivals, nights spent at tourist accommodation establishments at NUTS 2 level.

Please note that for paragraphs where no metadata for regional data has been specified, the regional metadata is identical to the metadata provided for the national data.

3.2. Classification system

For data up to 2011 (reference year), the classification system applicable (under Directive 95/57/EC) is described in the document: "Community methodology on Tourism statistics", which is available from OPOCE, under the reference: ISBN 92-828-1921-3 as well as on the tourism statistics section of Eurostat's website (http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/portal/page/portal/tourism/methodology).

Data as of reference periods for 2012 (under Regulation (EU) 692/2011), 'tourist accommodation establishments' are described according to the NACE Rev. 2 classification (groups 55.1, 55.2 and 55.3).

The Regulation also introduces two new breakdowns in accommodation statistics at the regional level, namely the degree of urbanisation (thinly populated area, intermediate density area , densely populated area) and the coastal or non-coastal character of the locality where the establishments are located.

Regional data

The territorial classification of regional data is broken down according to the NUTS classification .

The regional data is available at NUTS 2 level.

3.3. Coverage - sector

Up to reference period 2011 (i.e. Directive 95/57/EC), the statistics cover enterprises that regularly or occasionally provide overnight accommodation for tourists. This largely (but not exhaustively) overlaps with the activities that fall under NACE Rev.2 groups 55.1, 55.2 and 55.3.

From reference period 2012 onwards (i.e. Reg 692/2011), the statistics cover groups 55.1, 55.2 and 55.3 of NACE Rev.2.

3.4. Statistical concepts and definitions

Up to reference period 2011, tourism occupancy statistics consist of harmonised data collected by the Member States in the frame of the Council Directive on tourism statistics 95/57/EC .

From reference period 2012 onwards, tourism occupancy statistics consist of harmonised data collected by the Member States in the frame of the Regulation (EU) 692/2011 of the European Parliament and of the Council.

Available statistics include variables on occupancy in tourist accommodation establishments:  nights spent, arrivals and occupancy rate of bed places and - as of 2012 - occupancy rates of bedrooms.

Nights spent by residents and non-residents

A night spent (or overnight stay) is each night a guest / tourist (resident or non-resident) actually spends (sleeps or stays) in a tourist accommodation establishment or non-rented accommodation.

Overnight stays are calculated by country of residence of the guest and by month. Normally the date of arrival is different from the date of departure but persons arriving after midnight and leaving on the same day are included in overnight stays. A person should not be registered in two or more accommodation establishments at the same time.


Arrivals of residents and non-residents

An arrival is defined as a person (tourist) who arrives at a tourist accommodation establishment and checks in or arrives at non-rented accommodation. But in the scope of the Regulation concerning European statistics on tourism, this variable is not collected for the latter type of accommodation.

Statistically there is not much difference if, instead of arrivals, departures are counted. No age limit is applied: children are counted as well as adults, even in the case when the overnight stays of children might be free of charge. Arrivals are registered by country of residence of the guest and by month. The arrivals of same-day visitors spending only a few hours during the day (no overnight stay, the date of arrival and departure are the same) at the establishment are excluded from accommodation statistics.

Net occupancy of bed places

The occupancy rate of bed places in reference period is obtained by dividing the total number of overnight stays by the number of the bed places on offer (excluding extra beds) and the number of days when the bed places are actually available for use (net of seasonal closures and other temporary closures for decoration, by police order, etc.). The result is multiplied by 100 to express the occupancy rate as a percentage.

Net occupancy of bedrooms

The net occupancy rate of bedrooms in reference period is obtained by dividing the total number of bedrooms used during the reference period (i.e. the sum of the bedrooms in use per day) by the total number of bedrooms available for the reference period (i.e. the sum of bedrooms available per day). The result is multiplied by 100 to express the occupancy rate as a percentage.

Country of residence

A person is considered to be a resident in a country (place) if the person:

- has lived for most of the past year or 12 months in that country (place), or

- has lived in that country (place) for a shorter period and intends to return within 12 months to live in that country (place).

International tourists should be classified according to their country of residence, not according to their citizenship. From a tourism standpoint any person who moves to another country (place) and intends to stay there for more than one year is immediately assimilated with other residents of that country (place). Citizens residing abroad who return to their country of citizenship on a temporary visit are included with non-resident visitors. Citizenship is indicated in the person's passport (or other identification document), while country of residence has to be determined by means of question or inferred e.g. from the person's address.

Regional data

Not all national tables are necessarily available at regional level. To consult the list of available national and regional datasets, please consult annex/footnote.

3.5. Statistical unit

According to Regulation 692/2011 concerning European statistics on tourism, 'tourist accommodation establishment' means a local kind-of-activity unit as defined in the Annex to Council Regulation (EEC) No 696/93 providing as a paid service (although the price might be partially or fully subsidised) short-term or short-stay accommodation services [see Article 2(1,l)].

Tourism accommodation establishments are classified and described in groups according to NACE Rev. 2 classification as follow:

  •  I551 (hotels and similar accommodation)
  •  I552 (holiday and other short-stay accommodation);
  •  I553 (camping grounds, recreational vehicle parks and trailer parks).

For the data up to 2011, according to Directive 95/57 the statistical unit relates to 'collective tourist accommodation establishments' defined as an accommodation establishment that provides overnight lodging for the traveller in a room or some other unit, but the number of places it provides must be greater than a specified minimum for groups of persons exceeding a single family unit and all the places in the establishment must come under a common commercial-type management, even if it is non-profit-making.

Collective tourist accommodation establishments (A001) consist of :

  • Hotels and similar establishments (A100);
  • Other collective accommodation establishments (B100) (Tourist campsites (B010), holiday dwellings (B020), other collective accommodation (B040).

In order to create long time series, the following correspondence has been established between statistical unit as defined by the Directive and by the Regulation:

A001 = I551+I552+I553

A100 = I551

B100 = I552+I553

B020 = I552

B010 = I553

Though the statistical unit as defined by the Regulation and as defined by the Directive are quite similar, breaks in time series due to a change in scope or revised methodologies can be observed between the reference period 2011 and 2012.

3.6. Statistical population

The statistical population for data up to 2011 consists of all collective accommodation establishments (as defined in §3.5) in the respective Member States.

In the Directive, limitations are not clearly defined, and consequently different thresholds are applied by Member States (see attached footnotes under section 21.3).

To reduce the burden on administrations and reporting units, the Regulation (data as of 2012) allows certain limitations in the scope. These limitations are clearly defined. An estimate of the total number of nights spent during the reference year by residents and non-residents in the tourist accommodation establishments excluded from the scope of observation shall be transmitted annually.

3.7. Reference area

Data are transmitted by all Member States, as well as EFTA and Candidate Countries.

European aggregates (EU-28, EU-28) are calculated when sufficient data is available.

3.8. Coverage - Time

Data according to Regulation 692/2011 is available from 2012 onwards.

Data according to Directive 95/57 is available from 1990 onwards (depending on the Member State) and up to 2011.

Regional data

Data is available from 1990 onwards.

3.9. Base period

Not applicable

4. Unit of measureTop

Data is expressed in absolute values, in thousands and in percentage change compared to corresponding period of the previous year.

Data concerning the occupancy rates is expressed in percentages.

5. Reference PeriodTop

Data refer to the calendar month and year.

Regional data

Data refer to calendar year.

6. Institutional MandateTop
6.1. Institutional Mandate - legal acts and other agreements

From reference year 2012 onwards, the collection of statistical information in the field of tourism is regulated by the Regulation (EU) 692/2011 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 6 July 2011 and its Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 1051/2011 of 20 October 2011.

Up to reference year 2011,  the collection of statistical information in the field of tourism was regulated by the Council Directive 95/57/EC on tourism statistics. The Commission Decision of December 1998 (1999/34/EC) implemented some aspects of this Directive. Amendments in 2004 and 2006 concerned the enlargement of EU and recent changes in the world market for tourism.

Regional data

Same legal acts apply to regional data.

Regions are defined according the NUTS specification as specified in Regulation (EC) No 1059/2003 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 26 May 2003 on the establishment of a common classification of territorial units for statistics (NUTS).  

6.2. Institutional Mandate - data sharing

Eurostat tourism statistics also serve as an input for a.o. OECD and UNWTO datasets.

7. ConfidentialityTop
7.1. Confidentiality - policy

Regulation (EC) No 223/2009 on European statistics (recital 24 and Article 20(4)) of 11 March 2009 (OJ L 87, p. 164), stipulates the need to establish common principles and guidelines ensuring the confidentiality of data used for the production of European statistics and the access to those confidential data with due account for technical developments and the requirements of users in a democratic society.

7.2. Confidentiality - data treatment

Where necessary, confidential data is flagged in the internal databases with limited access and as such omitted from public databases or publications. In general, very few data relating to tourism statistics can be considered to have a confidential nature.

8. Release policyTop
8.1. Release calendar


National data

Data is released via Eurobase shortly after reception of the data transmitted by the Member State and after quality checks and validation by Eurostat.

Regional data

See national data.

8.2. Release calendar access

Not applicable

8.3. Release policy - user access

In line with the Community legal framework and the European Statistics Code of Practice Eurostat disseminates European statistics on Eurostat's website (see item 10 - 'Dissemination format') respecting professional independence and in an objective, professional and transparent manner in which all users are treated equitably. The detailed arrangements are governed by the Eurostat protocol on impartial access to Eurostat data for users.

9. Frequency of disseminationTop

Annual and monthly

Regional data


10. Dissemination formatTop
10.1. Dissemination format - News release

News releases on-line.

10.2. Dissemination format - Publications

Free publications: on line

Statistics in Focus, Data in Focus

Overview of tourism related publications : http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/portal/page/portal/tourism/publications

Regional data

See chapter on tourism in Eurostat Regional Yearbook.

10.3. Dissemination format - online database

Please consult free data on-line or refer to contact details.

10.4. Dissemination format - microdata access


10.5. Dissemination format - other

See statistics explained on tourism.

11. Accessibility of documentationTop
11.1. Documentation on methodology

Overview of tourism statistics related methodology: http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/portal/page/portal/tourism/methodology

11.2. Quality management - documentation


Not publicly available, but can be obtained on request.

12. Quality managementTop
12.1. Quality assurance

Tourism statistics are compiled by the competent national statistics authorities. Data are collected and compiled in line with the Council Directive 95/57/EC, the European Parliament and Council Regulation 692/2011  and with the Code of Practice applicable to all processes for collecting and compiling European statistics.

After reception of the data, thorough quality control and validation checks are performed by Eurostat before releasing the data.

12.2. Quality management - assessment

The European Parliament and Council Regulation 692/2011 (Art. 6 (3)) , foresees the submission by the Member States of report on quality of the data every year.

The Council Directive also foresees in the submission by the Member States of reports concerning the quality, comparability and completeness of the statistical information (see Art. 8(1) of Directive 95/57/EC). The most recent exercise took place in 2010 relating to the reference year 2008. 

13. RelevanceTop
13.1. Relevance - User Needs

The importance of the tourism sector for the economic, social and cultural development of Europe is generally acknowledged. Council Directive 95/57/EC of 23 November 1995 on the collection of statistical information in the field of tourism provided for the establishment of an information system on tourism statistics at Community level. The Directive has helped create national data collection systems with data on the capacity and occupancy of accommodation establishments, from a business perspective, and on tourism demand, from a visitors' perspective. The current availability of a system of tourism statistics in the European Union would not have been possible without the Directive.

The European Council stressed, in its Presidency Conclusions of 14 December 2007, the crucial role that tourism plays in generating growth and jobs in the EU and called on the Commission, Member States, industry and other stakeholders to join forces in the timely implementation of the Agenda for a sustainable and competitive European tourism.

Any appraisal of the competitiveness of the Community tourism industry, which occupies an important place in the economy of the Member States, with tourist activities representing a large potential source of employment, requires a good knowledge of the volume of tourism, its characteristics, the profile of the tourist and tourism expenditure.

13.2. Relevance - User Satisfaction

Only measured directly via download statistics for publications and feedback on publications or presentations.

A more in-depth review of the domain, including feedback by users, is carried out in 2012.

13.3. Completeness

Due to the thresholds that a number of Member States apply (see §3.6), the data is not always representative for the totality of collective tourist accommodation establishments.

Furthermore, the data is representing arrivals and nights spent at such collective tourist accommodation establishments and therefore not representing all domestic or inbound tourism.

With the enter into force of the new Regulation (from reference period 2012), completeness of data should improve:

  • Member States shall provide an estimate for the establishments excluded from the scope one time per year.
  • Data for non-rented accommodation will be collected (on a voluntary basis).

14. AccuracyTop
14.1. Accuracy - overall

Not available

14.2. Sampling error

Not available

14.3. Non-sampling error


Not available

15. Timeliness and punctualityTop
15.1. Timeliness

According to the Directive:

  • For annual data, provisional data should be sent 6 months after the reference period and final data 12 months after the reference period.
  • For monthly data, provisional data should be sent 3 months after the reference period and final data 6 months after the reference period.

According to the Regulation:

  • Annual data should be sent 6 months after the reference period;
  • Monthly data should be sent 3 months after the reference period;
  • The monthly rapid key indicators relating to nights spent by residents and non-residents in tourist accommodation establishments should be sent 8 weeks after the end of the reference period.

Regional data

Data should be sent 6 months after the reference period.

15.2. Punctuality

Data is released from one day till one month after the delivery.

16. ComparabilityTop
16.1. Comparability - geographical

To a certain extent, the application of national thresholds for data collection jeopardizes the comparability of the data.

16.2. Comparability - over time

Although the statistical unit as defined by the Regulation and as defined by the Directive are quite similar (see 3.5), breaks can be observed between the reference period 2011 and 2012.

Regional data

Comparability of regional data over time will be affected by breaks in the NUTS classification.

17. CoherenceTop
17.1. Coherence - cross domain

More data usable for cross-check are available in various collections from Eurostat's website (Regional, Social, Employment and SBS statistics). Cross domain checks are made at irregular intervals.

17.2. Coherence - internal

The quality checks and validation rules include checks on the internal coherence across tables and across reference periods.

18. Cost and BurdenTop

Not measured in a systemic way.

19. Data revisionTop
19.1. Data revision - policy

According to the Directive 95/57/EC, provisional annual data are revised 12 months after reference year and provisional monthly data 6 months after reference month.

No revision policy is defined in the Regulation 692/2011.

Released data is revised on an ad-hoc basis, following reception of revised data sent by the Member States.

19.2. Data revision - practice

Tourism data, especially monthly data, are subject to revisions.

Major changes in EU-methodology are the result of legislation, and therefore announced in the Official Journal of the European Communities.

20. Statistical processingTop
20.1. Source data

The majority of the Member States compile the information on the basis of sample survey or census of accommodation establishments. However, in a few cases the data is compiled from a demand-side perspective (i.e. via visitor surveys or border surveys).

20.2. Frequency of data collection

Annual / Monthly

Regional data

Data are compiled and transmitted on an annual basis (but collected via the monthly surveys).

20.3. Data collection

Tourism capacity/occupancy data is collected by Member States by the mean of business survey (in some cases capacity data is available directly from tourism registers).

These figures are transmitted exclusively via eDAMIS and respecting the formats as specified by Eurostat.

Data comprises four compulsory datasets and one optional dataset:





capacity of tourist accommodation establishments

T+6 months


annual occupancy data

T+6 months


  monthly data on nights spent by residents and non-residents at tourist accommodation establishments 

T+8 weeks and T+3 months


monthly data on arrivals and net occupancy rates

T+3 months


annual data on nights spent in non-rented accommodation (voluntary transmission)

T+9 months

20.4. Data validation

Data validation is done at the level of Member States and at the level of Eurostat.

Member States should send data file:

  • Complete
  • Consistent with format description
  • Internally consistent

Eurostat make some additional validations such as:

  • Checking the size of revisions
  • Checking the evolutions
  • Looking at the plausibility of indicators
  • Comparing annual/monthly data
  • Making some inter-datasets comparisons
20.5. Data compilation

Totals computation

Some totals are not provided by the Member States but calculated directly by Eurostat, for example:

  • The total of resident and non-resident is calculated for the number of nights and arrivals
  • The total of tourist accommodation establishments is calculated as the sum of the three NACE (I551+I552+I553)

Indicator calculation

Some indicators are calculated and disseminated on Eurostat web site:

  • Growth rate of total number of nights spent
  • Share of nights spent by non-residents in total number of nights spent
  • Tourism intensity (total number of nights spent per 1 000 inhabitants) 

European aggregates

European aggregates (EU27, EU25 and Euro area) are automatically calculated when data from all countries composing the aggregate are present. 

Where possible/appropriate, an algorithm is used to impute missing country data in order to allow the calculation of EU aggregates.

20.6. Adjustment

Not applicable

21. CommentTop

Special warnings: Please consult the file containing footnotes in "Annex" at the bottom of the page.

Related metadataTop
tour_cap_esms - Capacity of tourist accommodation establishments