The true extent of alojamento local (privately rented holiday properties) may never be known, but the official data is already pointing to the sector holding 45% of available holiday beds in Portugal.
Breaking the news on Wednesday, Portugal’s hoteliers’ association said that there are currently 350,000 ‘holiday beds’ on national territory – 192,000 provided by hotels and hostels and the rest via private rentals registered on the national ‘alojamento local’ registry.
Madeira is the place with the most booming business (75.8% of stays there are in alojamento local), followed by Lisbon (65.4%), while the Azores has reached 50.4%.
All destinations have seen an exponential leap in popularity over the last few years, explains dinheirovivo website, adding that although there are no concrete figures for the first four months of this year, the hoteliers’ association (via Bank of Portugal and INE statistical information) has estimated that Portugal has already hosted 4.78 million tourists over and above numbers passing through the country in the same period last year.
What is interesting however are comments on this story, which include the observation that “these official numbers are a long way from the reality. It is very easy to discover (the real figures). It is strange that no-one seems to want to know”.