Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Pilgrims ages are changing! Fraluchi's commentary on the August stastistics

Pilgrim arrival statistics – August 2013

During August 2013 46’728 Pilgrims arrived in Santiago, which represents an increase of 14% compared to August last year.

Year-to-date there were 158’809 arrivals, showing an overall increase of 12% compared to 2012 (141’376). Nationals represented 51 % and their numbers increased 11% compared to last year. 

Foreign pilgrims increased 14%.

Almost 110’000 pilgrims walked the Camino Francés this year, an increase of 13% compared to 2012.They represent 69% of the total arrivals in Santiago.

22’635 walked the Camino Portugués this year, an increase of 17% compared to 2012. They represent 14 % of the total arrivals in Santiago.

The Camino Primitivo was chosen by 3% of the pilgrims, 5’003 in total, with an increase of 7% compared to 2012.

It is interesting to note that pilgrims who chose the Camino Francès this year started from totally different locations, compared to last year. Pilgrims starting from Burgos, Leon and Astorga decreased 8% compared to 2012, as opposed to those who started from SJPP, Roncesvalles and Pamplona, who increased 8% (SJPP alone + 14%).

The proportion of those who started from O’Cebreiro and Sarria, compared to the total of Camino Francès pilgrims, reached an amazing 70% as compared to 39% in 2012. There is a clear tendency towards shorter distances here.

From a financial point of view, this would indicate that the average “length of walk” has substantially diminished individual spending.

There is a definite shift within pilgrims’ age groups. Whereas those between 30 and 60 years old remained at 56% of all pilgrims, the more than 60 years old increased by 2 percentage points (14% in 2013; 12% in 2012) at detriment of the less than 30 years old (30% in 2013; 32% in 2012). Retired people represent approx. 11% of all pilgrim arrivals, and since they often are long distance pilgrims as well (more available time) they usually are higher spenders than the younger counterparts.

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