The number of American tourists staying overnight in Switzerland surged by 20% between January and October 2023 compared to the pre-pandemic year of 2019, according to RTS

public radio.

During this period, US tourists spent 2.7 million nights in Switzerland, a figure expected to reach 3 million by December 31, 2023—marking the highest number recorded in the past four decades.

Over the last fifteen years, the influx of US visitors has doubled, showing a consistent upward trend. These tourists gravitate towards cities like Zurich, Lucerne, Geneva, Basel, and Bern, as well as scenic mountain regions such as Zermatt, Lauterbrunnen, Interlaken, and Grindelwald.

Valais, in particular, has witnessed a substantial surge in overnight stays, recording a remarkable 43% increase between January and October 2023 compared to 2019. Alessandro Marcolin, the communications director for the canton’s tourism body, attributes this growth to a rebound in tourism activities and a catch-up effect following reduced American travel during the Covid years.

Marcolin noted Switzerland's appeal as a safe destination with excellent infrastructure, attributing its allure to the nation's effective handling of the pandemic.

Switzerland Tourism also attributes the rise in American visitors to consistent marketing efforts throughout the pandemic. Continuous engagement within the tourism sector and Switzerland's favorable economic conditions have contributed significantly. With historically low unemployment in the US and lower inflation rates in Switzerland compared to other European countries, the country has become a more attractive destination for these predominantly affluent American travelers.

Despite the surge in American visitors, the Swiss remain the primary guests in terms of overnight stays, followed by Germans, placing Americans third in the list of visitors contributing to Switzerland's tourism sector. Photo by Alecanto29, Wikimedia commons.