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Record summer for Swedish tourism

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10:47 CEST+02:00
The best Swedish summer in years was witnessed by a record number of tourists. The number of overnight stays as well as revenues from tourist accommodation both reached new highs this summer.

According to Nutek, the Swedish Agency for Economic and Regional Growth, overnight visits for the summer added 3.9 billion kronor to the Swedish economy, which represents a ten percent increase on the previous year.

The number of overnight stays in hotels, holiday homes and hostels increased by 5.2 percent compared to 2005. A total of 10.2 million overnight stays were registered during the summer months, which generally account for 35 percent of the annual total.

July and August were particularly strong months, providing a major boost for the summer as a whole.

"This growth is another piece of the puzzle in a long-term trend," Nutek's Dennis Bederoff told The Local.

"We have seen a positive development over to last 5-10 years, with increases in both the domestic and foreign markets. This summer has seen a lot of traffic from the European market with many visitors from Norway, Germany, Denmark, Britain, the Netherlands, and also the United States," said Bederoff.

There is still a long way to go before Sweden reaches any sort of saturation point. And Bederoff stresses that Sweden is not particularly interested in developing into a tourist mecca.

"We are still small as a tourist destination and there is a consensus that nobody wants Sweden to become a mass tourism country. Being keen travellers Swedes have seen the drawbacks of mass tourism. We see that tourists are looking from real meetings with real people. Of course we want more visitors because tourism is good for the economy and it creates entrepreneurial activity. But we also want to find the right balance and ensure that we provide high-quality service," he said.

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