(Brussels) In 2018, “the number of nights spent in tourist accommodation establishments in the European Union is expected to have reached more than 3.1 billion, up by 2.2% compared with 2017”. This is according to a study published by Eurostat today. “Since 2009, there has been a steady increase in the number of nights spent in tourist accommodation establishments in the EU, notably driven by the rise in the nights spent by non-residents of the country visited”. In 2018, Spain (467 million nights, -0.9% compared with 2017) retained its lead as the country with the highest number of tourists. Indeed, it ranked ahead of France (444 million, +2.4%), Italy (429 million, +1.9%) and Germany (419 million, +4.3%). The number of nights spent in tourist accommodation grew in nearly all Member States, with the largest increases observed in Latvia (+8.3%), Lithuania (+7.7%) and Malta (+6.5%), followed by Poland (+5.8%), Romania (+5.5%) and Belgium (+5.4%). In contrast, decreases were registered in Luxembourg (-4.3%), Ireland (-1.5%) and Spain (-0.9%). In some countries, “resident” tourists were predominant, that is, citizens visiting cities of their country for work or leisure (as in the case of Romania, Poland, Germany, Sweden, Finland, France, and the United Kingdom). In some other countries, the largest shares of nights were spent by non-residents: Malta, Cyprus, Croatia, Greece, Portugal, and Spain. In others still, the nights spent by residents and non-residents were almost equivalent: Italy, Belgium, and Ireland.