Photo description: Mother and daughter watching how airplane passengers disembark at an airport.


Over 85 percent of people in the Netherlands go on holiday. Nearly two-thirds of them take a trip abroad. Almost 49 percent travel to foreign destinations by plane, while around 44 percent go by car. How often do people from other European countries go on holiday, and do they stay in their own country or do they spend it abroad? How often do they travel by air?

Meetlat-18-aantal-vakanties_ENG GR BG I T RO HR BE L T PL M T P T SK HU SI L V EU A T DE NL L U EE C Y IE ES FR CZ DK SE FI 3.0 2.6 H o l i d a y s per i n h a b i t a n t , 2017

Over 62 percent of Europeans (223 million) go on holiday, with half of them spending the holiday abroad. In total, these are more than 118 million holidays. People living in smaller countries relatively often travel abroad for their holidays, while those living in larger EU countries are more likely to stay in their own country. In France and Spain, for example, nine in every ten holidaymakers stay in their own country. Dutch holidaymakers going abroad prefer spending their long holiday (four or more nights) in Spain or Germany. Their favourite destinations for a short break (one to three nights) are Germany and Belgium.

Taking the plane abroad

For holidays abroad, nearly 49 percent of Dutch tourists take an airplane to reach their destination. Almost 44 percent travel by car, while the remaining 7 percent take other means of transportation such as a bus, train or boat.

Island residents are relatively likely to take a plane to a foreign holiday destination: over 98 percent of people in Cyprus, and 92 percent of holidaymakers in Malta. For people from Ireland as well, a trip abroad is more likely by air (88 percent). The inhabitants of Slovenia are least likely to fly abroad for leisure. Slightly over 8 percent of their foreign holidays are by air.

€ 830 spent by Dutch on an average foreign holiday
€ 857 is the EU average

Swedish spending the most

On average, Swedish holidaymakers abroad spend the most, namely close to 1,500 euros per person, followed by Danish tourists with over 1,300 euros. Dutch holidaymakers spend 830 euros per person, less than the EU average of 857 euros. Slovenians spend the lowest amount at around 270 euros.


Eurostat – Tourism


This web publication was developed by Statistics Netherlands (CBS) in cooperation with Textcetera The Hague.
If you have a question or comment about this publication, please contact us.

Disclaimer and copyright


On this website, CBS uses functional cookies on this website to allow proper functioning of the site. These cookies do not contain personal user data and have minimal or no consequences for your privacy. In addition, CBS uses analytical cookies to track visitor statistics, including the number of page views, which topics users are searching, and how visitors reach our website. The purpose is to gain insight into the functioning of the website in order to improve your user experience. We minimise traceability of visitors to our website as much as possible by anonymising the final octet (group of eight bits) of each IP address. These data are not shared with other parties. CBS does not use tracking cookies. Tracking cookies are cookies that track visitors during their browsing of other websites.

The functional and analytical cookies have minimal or no consequences for your privacy. In accordance with current regulations, these cookies may be placed without prior consent.

More information (in Dutch only):


Explanation of symbols

empty cell Not applicable
. Data not available
* Provisional figure
** Revised provisional figure
2018-2019 2018 to 2019 inclusive
2018/2019 Average for 2018 to 2019 inclusive
2018/’19 Crop year, financial year, school year, etc., beginning in 2018 and ending in 2019
2016/’17-2018/’19 Crop year, financial year, etc., 2016/’17 to 2018/’19 inclusive

Due to rounding, some totals may not correspond to the sum of the separate figures.

About CBS

CBS responds to developments in Dutch society by providing statistical information as facts that matter, and communicates on these facts with the outside world. In doing so, CBS offers insights into current developments in society and helps answer policy questions. Research at CBS is focused on broad trends in society and how these are interrelated.

CBS has offices in The Hague, Heerlen and Bonaire with altogether approximately 2,000 staff. A society-oriented working attitude is essential to CBS. CBS provides figures which are relevant to society. Every year, CBS publishes around 600 statistical studies. Virtually every day, CBS data and figures are communicated to the outside world via news releases, video messages and through social media. This results in some 50,000 articles per year in daily newspapers and on news sites.

For more information on CBS’s tasks, organisation and publications, go to


Should you have any questions or need more information, please contact us.