Updated on July 19, 2022 by Axel Hernborg

Axel Hernborg

Morocco’s tourism business is well-developed, with a heavy focus on the country’s coast, culture, and heritage. In 1985, the Moroccan government established a Ministry of Tourism. Morocco’s tourism industry is one of the country’s key sources of foreign cash, and it has had the largest number of visitors from Africa since 2013. Morocco reportedly attracted 12.3 million tourists in 2018. Between 1 and 1.5 million Europeans visited Morocco in the mid of 1980s and the early 1990s. The majority of the travelers were from France or Spain, with roughly 100,000 visitors each from the United Kingdom, Italy, Germany, and the Netherlands. The beach resorts along the Atlantic coast, especially Agadir, were popular among tourists. Around 20,000 Saudi Arabians came to visit, with some purchasing vacation houses.

Tourism contributes significantly to Morocco’s economy and is regarded as a key industry in the country’s economic and social growth. After the phosphate sector, tourism is Morocco’s second major source of foreign exchange. Morocco’s government is heavily investing in the growth of tourism. Following King Mohammed VI’s ascension in 1999, a new tourism plan named Vision 2010 was devised. Morocco was promoted as a cheap, exotic, and safe destination for European tourists in huge government-sponsored marketing efforts. Morocco’s relatively high tourist numbers have been boosted by its location, tourism attractions, and inexpensive cost. The ports of Casablanca and Tangier are visited by cruise ships. Morocco is near to Europe, and its beaches draw tourists. Tourists from southern Spain’s coastal areas visit Morocco for one to three days because of its proximity to Spain. The country’s top two tourist destinations are Marrakesh and Agadir. Due to the establishment of air connections between Morocco and Algeria, many Algerians have traveled to Morocco to shop and see family and friends.

Because of the country’s currency exchange rate compared to important currencies and the rise in hotel prices in neighboring Spain, Morocco is comparatively inexpensive. Morocco has a well-developed road and rail network that connects the country’s major towns and tourist attractions to ports and international airports. Economical air trips to the country are available from low-cost airlines.

Morocco Tourism Statistics

  1. Tourism receipts plummeted by 16.5 percent in 1990, the year when Gulf War started.
  2. Following the Marrakech incident in 1994, Algeria closed its border with Morocco, resulting in a significant drop in Algerian visitors: 70,000 in 1994 and 13,000 in 1995, compared to 1.66 million in 1992 and 1.28 million in 1993.
  3. Tourism revenues totaled 1.47 billion dollars in 1995, accounting for around 3.8 percent of the country’s gross domestic product.
  4. At the time, this equated to approximately 2.75 million tourists and $534 each person.
  5. The revenue in the latest year of the study was 4.51 billion dollars, representing 3.9 percent of the country’s gross domestic product.
  6. Each traveler to Morocco spends an average of $1,611 on his vacation.
  7. Tourist receipts totaled USD 7.55 billion in 2007.
  8. Morocco’s government hopes to have 10 million visitors by 2010, with tourism accounting for 20% of GDP.
  9. Tourist arrivals totaled 10.3 million in 2017, up from 10.1 million in 2016, a 1.5 percent rise year over year.
  10. Thirty percent of the visitors were from the 3.8 million Moroccans who live overseas.
  11. In 2017, nearly 2 million people visited Marrakech.
  12. Overnight stays in categorized hotels increased by 8% in the mid of 2017 compared to the same time in 2016, indicating that domestic tourism is on the rise.
  13. As of 2019, Moroccan citizens accounted for 46% of all arrivals.
  14. Morocco’s tourist bed capacity increased to over 270 thousand in 2020, up from roughly 268.8 thousand the previous year.
  15. This group of French national passengers accounted for 49 percent and 15 percent of all travelers, respectively.
  16. Furthermore, the international tourists from Spain and the United Kingdom accounted for 7% and 4% of total tourism, respectively (for more Spain tourism statistics, check out our guide here).
  17. In 2019, foreign nationals accounted for 54 percent of all inbound tourists, with Europe being the most popular destination.
  18. Tourism-related jobs accounted for 5% of overall employment in Morocco as of 2019 have the same percentage of the market as the previous year.
  19. This percentage has expanded since 2010 when the tourist sector directly employed 4.3 percent of the country’s entire workforce.
  20. In 2018, the country welcomed 12.3 million foreign tourists.
  21. Tourism-related GDP increased by 6.2 percent in 2018, reaching MAD 76.9 billion, up from MAD 72.4 billion in 2017.
  22. It’s put up Morocco’s GDP increased to 6.9%, up from 6.8% the year before.
  23. In 2018, overseas tourists to Morocco produced nearly MAD 89 billion in revenue (including international transport).
  24. In 2018, this accounted for about 51% of service exports.
  25. With 550,000 direct jobs in 2018, the tourism department is a magnificent source of employment in Morocco, accounting for 5% of total employment.
  26. About 57.5 percent of the market share, France, Spain, and Germany remain the top three source markets.
  27. Between 2017 and 2018, the major inbound travel markets all rose, with residents from Germany increasing by 10.1 percent, France by 7.6 percent, Spain by 6.4 percent, and the United Kingdom (UK) by 3.8 percent.
  28. Internal tourist spending in 2018 was anticipated to be MAD 131 billion, up 5.4 percent from 2017.
  29. Domestic tourism spending increased by 4.4 percent to MAD 41 billion.
  30. Overnight stays in designated tourism lodging businesses increased by 8.7% in 2018 (after increasing by 14.8% in 2017), owing to a 12.1 percent increase in non-resident overnight stays.
  31. Residents accounted for 30% of the complete nightlong stays in hotels and equivalent places recorded in 2018, totaling 24 million nights.
  32. In 2018, there were 3.2 million domestic tourists, up 4.1 percent from 2017.
  33. In total, Morocco has around 5.7 thousand tourism businesses in 2019.
  34. Morocco’s tourism revenue in 2019 was $10,013,000,000.00, up 5.18 percent from the previous year.
  35. The Ministry of Tourism’s budget comes from the national budget and totaled MAD 860 million in 2019, up 41% from 2018.
  36. The percentage is divided among various sectors such as Central Administration, regional and provincial delegations (39 percent); Moroccan National Tourist Office (35 percent); Moroccan Society for Tourism Engineering (19 percent); and training schools (7 percent ).
  37. Morocco received 3 million tourists in 2020, placing it 53rd in the world in terms of total visitors.
  38. The outcome is a far more comparable image when the tourist numbers are compared to the Moroccan population: Morocco was rated 131st in the world with 0.076 tourists per citizen the fourth place in Northern Africa.
  39. Morocco’s tourism industry alone generated $4.51 billion in revenue on average.
  40. This amounts to 3.9 percent of the country’s gross domestic product and around 43% of all international tourism receipts in Northern Africa.
  41. From the observed statistics from 1995 to 2020, majority of international tourist visits observed in 2019 with 12.5 million tourists in North Africa.
  42. Morocco’s tourist arrivals dropped from 7250000 in 2020 to 4000000 in 2021.
  43. The pandemic (COVID-19) had a significant impact on numbers, six million inbound tourists were expected to visit the country in 2021.
  44. During the period under consideration, the country’s tourist accommodation capacity steadily increased as around 4.2 thousand hotels and related lodging services were in operation.
  45. According to Trading Economics’ global macro models and analysts’ forecasts, tourist arrivals in Morocco are predicted to reach 8000000.00 by the end of 2022.
  46. According to Morocco econometric models, Morocco Tourist Arrivals will be approximately 10500000.00 in 2023 and 12000000.00 in 2024.