Ruta do Viño Rías Baixas received a total of 124,104 visitors in 2019 after experiencing an increase of almost 7% over the previous year. This figure places the Rías Baixas Wine Route among the ten most visited Routes during 2019. The ‘Report on visitors to wineries and wine museums’ compiled by the Spanish Wine Routes Tourist Observatory, which presents detailed information about the wine tourism offer of the 31 Wine Routes which make up the Spanish Wine Route Product Club, allows an analysis of the evolution of wine tourism over the last few years and, as a result, makes an approximation of the economic impact of this sector. According to the data in this report, the Rías Baixas Wine Route offers a total of 85 wine tourism services, including visits to wineries, accommodation or restaurants, among others.
In 2019, the total number of visitors to wineries and wine museums associated with the Wine Routes of Spain was 3,076,334, representing an increase of 3.8%, and an increase of 114,955 visitors. In the case of Rías Baixas, the total number of visits to wineries and museums amounted to 124,104 people, of which 96% – with a total of 118,680 – corresponded to wineries, making Rías Baixas the sixth most visited route in Spain, while 4% were to museums – with a total of 5,424 visits. As explained by the RVE Tourist Observatory, Rías Baixas is one of the Routes that receives the most visitors to its wineries. Lorena Varela, manager of the Rías Baixas Wine Route, stressed that “the data from last year are positive for our members, but now we have to continue working and, above all, innovating and looking for attractive formulas to be able to grow and face up to the extraordinary situation in which we find ourselves”.
Origin of visitors and average expenditure
The origin of visitors to the Wine Routes of Spain is national in 74.7% of cases, compared to 25.3% of international visitors. In Rías Baixas, the percentage was even higher in the case of national visitors, with 83.6% as compared with 16.4% international visitors, indicating an increase in national tourism as compared with the previous year. A total of 103,712 persons who visited the Rías Baixas Wine Route were from Spain, as compared with 20,392 persons from abroad.
With regard to the expenditure made by these visitors, in general the average expenditure per visitor in a shop is considerably higher than the average price of the visit. In other words, tourists spend more on buying wine and other products in the wineries than on the visit itself. In Rías Baixas, the average price of a visit is 5.68 euros – slightly more than in 2018 – and the average expenditure in a shop is 16.24 euros. In view of these data, the economic impact of the Wine Route and its associates in Rías Baixas amounts to 1,927,363.20 euros.
De-seasonalisation of tourism
One of the main conclusions of the RVE Tourism Observatory Report is that Spain’s Wine Routes contribute significantly to the deseasonalisation of tourism. However, it is the months of August, September and October that have seen the greatest influx of visitors, with October standing out as the month that received the greatest number of visitors, with 335,453 visits. Despite this, in Rías Baixas the month with the highest influx was August, while the month with the lowest influx was January.