Distribution of microdata

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In order to allow users to carry out in-depth quantitative analyses, this section makes available the set of survey microdata and their metadata, with the sole exception of some variables subject to confidentiality restrictions.

The microdata are updated annually; those referring to the year 2021 have been released on June 16, 2022. An extensive analysis of the most important survey results is available in the document Survey on international tourism published in the "Statistics" series of Bank of Italy.

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Data structure

The microdata are compressed in various archives (.zip), distinguished by year, residence of travellers (Italian and foreign) and groups of variables, the latter classified among:

  • main variables, i.e. a selection of the most commonly used variables in the experience of the Bank of Italy;
  • secondary variables, relative to all the remaining information contained in the original database, with the exception of the variables that are not supplied in order to guarantee the confidentiality of the data;
  • grossing - up factors for the sample data, used for gross-up the data from the individual interviews to the reference population.

The expenditure variables are given according to the grossed-up value; however, it is possible to bring them back to the original sample value through the use of the grossing-up factors, following the instructions described in detail in the Microdata Manual.

Data are distributed as CSV (Comma Separated Value) files, SAS datasets (SAS7BDAT) and, limited to the most used variables, pivot tables (Excel 2010). In CSV files the fields are separated by commas and the first line contains the names of the variables.

The decimal notation used is the Anglo-Saxon one ("." as decimal separator). The archives are called XXX_principali_AAAA (main variables), where XXX represents the residence of travellers (Italian - ita or foreign - stra) and AAAA the year of survey, XXX_secondarie_ AAAA (secondary variables) and XXX_FP_AAAA (weighting factors).

For further clarifications, please write to the following e-mail: indagineturismo@bancaditalia.it.

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Data use

In publications using these data, the author must cite the source (Banca d'Italia, Indagine sul turismo internazionale dell'Italia), but the Bank is in no way responsible for their use, which is the sole responsibility of the author. It is also important to highlight cases in which the data on international tourism do not derive from publications of this Institute but are the result of processing by the user (e.g., elaborations by <institution_name> on Bank of Italy data, "Survey on international tourism in Italy").

For purposes of compiling a bibliography relating to this survey, please transmit a copy of any research works based on these data to:

Servizio Analisi statistiche

Divisione Statistiche sull'estero
Via Nazionale 91
00184 ROMA

or to the e-mail address: indagineturismo@bancaditalia.it.

To this end it is necessary to complete the following form: Download the form (XLS format).

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Microdata on 2020

In the months from March to June 2020 the survey on international tourism has been suspended due to Covid-19 crisis. In this period, the estimates on tourist flows were based on alternative sources, mainly mobile phone data and payment card transactions. The survey was then gradually resumed in the following months, despite being affected by the limitations imposed by the legislation on the prevention of the spread of the virus and stricter rules for the access to border points. This framework has determined, for the year 2020, the impossibility to process statistics with the usual information detail. As a result, the microdata and pivot tables on 2020 are made available in a form different from the usual one - and in files referring only to this year - as detailed below.

Pivot tables

  • only main classification variables are available;
  • some classification variables don't have the usual detailed information;
  • data on the number of travellers to the border, travellers at destination and nights are available; as regards the expenditure, the total is available but not the breakdown by type of expenditure


  • data are not available for the period from March to June 2020, since in this period no interviews were carried out; therefore, the annual totals that can be obtained from the microdata do not coincide with those published in the tables section or which can be obtained from the pivot tables;
  • February data only refer to the interviews carried out in the same month, without the contribution coming from the following month (i.e. from the trips concluded in March); consequently, the total figures referred to February obtainable from the microdata do not coincide either with those published in the tables section or with those of the pivot tables.

Using microdata and pivot tables on 2020 it is advisable to limit the analysis to single dimensions.

Metadata (CSV and SAS format)

The tables with the domains for each qualitative attribute (codes, descriptions and periods of validity) are provided in two zip sub-files in CSV and SAS format.


The information you need to exploit the data (an instruction manual with the notes for the use of the information, the list of variables with their formats and some examples of extraction from the SAS dataset) is given below.