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INEbase / Rural Tourism Accommodation Occupancy Survey / Methodology

Methodologies RTAOS


Analysis units

Rural accommodation, those establishments or dwellings destined for paid tourist lodging, with or without complementary services and which are registered in the corresponding Tourist Accommodation Register are considered. These establishments usually present some determined characteristics:

a) they are situated in a rural environment,
b) they are buildings with an architecture typical of the area or are studied in buildings which maintain active agricultural operations (agrotourism), and
c) they offer a number of vacancies and rooms for the limited lodging of guests, apart from combining certain infrastructure and basic provision requirements.

All establishments in the country are investigated

Sample design

The survey will be exhaustive in all provinces except in those in which the number of establishments is sufficiently high to take a sample.

Definition of Variables

Travellers checked in:

All those persons who stay one or more consecutive overnight stay in the same accommodation. Travellers are classified by their country of residence and in the case of Spaniards, information is requested on which Autonomous Community they come from.

Overnight stay or occupied vacancies:

An overnight stay is understood to be every night that a traveller stays in the establishment.

Degree of occupancy by vacancies:

Relationship as a percentage between the total of overnight stays and the product of vacancies (including extra beds) times the days to which the overnight stays refer.

Degree of occupancy by rooms:

Relationship, as a percentage, between the daily average of rooms occupied over the month and the total number of sample rooms in the same period.

Degree of occupancy by bedplaces at weekends:

Relationship, as a percentage, between the total number of overnight stays and the product of the vacancies (including extra beds) on Fridays and Saturdays.

Employed personnel

This is defined as the set of remunerated and non-remunerated persons who contribute by means of their work, to the production of goods and services during the survey reference period although they work outside premises.


The number of vacancies effectively contracted for the second and third month as of the reference period. For example, if the survey corresponds to the month of January information is requested on the months of March and April.

Rent and prices modality

Rural tourism accommodation may adopt one of these two rent modalities or both:

- the complete letting modality is described as the complete contracting of the property for the exclusive use of the contractor.
- the shared letting modality is defined as the individualised contracting of rooms within the family dwelling.

Prices are taken, in pesetas, in the reference week, without including VAT, of the complete dwelling, in the first case, and a double room, in the latter. In the case that both letting modalities are admitted, the two types of price will be taken.

Prices are requested by different types of tariff: normal, weekend, applied to travel agencies and others, and the number of overnight stays to which each type of tariff has been applied is requested.

Tourist area

Municipality where the concentration of tourist amenities is significant.

Tourist region

Group of municipalities where tourist inflow is specifically located. Information is presented on the areas that attract the greatest amount of tourists.

Collection of the information

The consultation of basic data refers to the reference month.

Information is supplied monthly by rural tourism accommodation, by means of questionnaire to the National Institute of Statistics. Similarly, it is possible to submit the information online via the IRIA system, directly completing the questionnaire on-screen. There is also another way to submit the information telematically or by uploading an XML file or over an Internet connection by means of the IRIA system, by completing the questionnaire directly on-screen.

Dissemination of the information

The information is presented on different levels of geographical breakdown: national, Autonomous Community, provincial, tourist regions and areas. The regions (group of municipalities) have been considered, as well as the municipalities where tourist inflow is specifically located.
The data estimates that are published are made using the data provided by the establishments in the reference month.