International Tourism Trends 2013

UNWTO has just published the latest World Tourism Barometer, showing that international tourist arrivals grew by 4% in 2012 to reach 1.035 billion, a record number.

Emerging economies (+4.1%) regained the lead over advanced economies (+3.6%), with Asia and the Pacific showing the strongest results. Growth is expected to continue in 2013 only slightly below the 2012 level (+3% to +4%).

With an additional 39 million international tourists, up from 996 million in 2011, international tourist arrivals surpassed 1 billion (1.035 billion) for the first time in history in 2012. Demand held well throughout the year, with a stronger than expected fourth quarter.

UNWTO 2012

By region, Asia and the Pacific (+7%) was the best performer, while by sub-region South-East Asia, North Africa (both at +9%) and Central and Eastern Europe (+8%) topped the ranking.

“2012 saw continued economic volatility around the globe, particularly in the Eurozone. Yet international tourism managed to stay on course” said UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai. “The sector has shown its capacity to adjust to the changing market conditions and, although at a slightly more modest rate, is expected to continue expanding in 2013. Tourism is thus one of the pillars that should be supported by governments around the world as part of the solution to stimulating economic growth,” he added.

UNWTO forecasts international tourist arrivals to increase by 3% to 4% in 2013, much in line with its long term forecast for 2030: +3.8% a year on average between 2010 and 2020. This outlook is confirmed by the UNWTO Confidence Index. Compiled among over 300 experts worldwide, the Index shows that prospects for 2013 are similar to the evaluation of last year (124 points for 2013 against 122 for 2012).

By region, prospects for 2013 are stronger for Asia and the Pacific (+5% to +6%), followed by Africa (+4% to +6%), the Americas (+3% to +4%), Europe (+2% to +3%) and the Middle East (0% to +5%).

Emerging economies regain the lead

In 2012, growth was stronger in emerging economies (+4.1%) as compared to advanced economies (+3.6%), a trend which has marked the sector for many years now.

International tourist arrivals to Europe, the most visited region in the world, were up by 3%; a very positive result in view of the economic situation, and following a strong 2011 (+6%). Total arrivals reached 535 million, 17 million more than in 2011. By sub-region, Central and Eastern Europe destinations (+8%) experienced the best results, followed by Western Europe (+3%). Destinations in Southern Mediterranean Europe (+2%) consolidated their excellent performance of 2011 and returned in 2012 to their normal growth rates.

Asia and the Pacific (+7%) was up by 15 million arrivals in 2012, reaching a total 233 million international tourists. South-East Asia (+9%) was the best performing sub-region much due to the implementation of policies that foster intraregional cooperation and coordination in tourism. Growth was also strong in North-East Asia (+6%), as Japanese inbound and outbound tourism recovered, while it was comparatively weaker in South Asia (+4%) and in Oceania (+4%).

The Americas (+4%) saw an increase of 6 million arrivals, reaching 162 million in total. Leading the growth were destinations in Central America (+6%), while South America, up by 4%, showed some slowdown as compared to the double-digit growth of 2010 and 2011. The Caribbean (+4%), on the other hand, is performing above the previous two years, while North America (+3%) consolidated its 2011 growth.

Africa (+6%) recovered well from its setback in 2011 when arrivals declined by 1% due largely to the negative results of North Africa. Arrivals reached a new record (52 million) due to the rebound in North Africa (+9% as compared to a 9% decline in 2011) and to the continued growth of Sub-Saharan destinations (+5%). Results in the Middle East(-5%) improved after a 7% decline in 2011, yet the region recorded an estimated 3 million international tourist arrivals less in 2012 in spite of the clear recovery in Egypt.

Receipts confirm positive trend in arrivals

Available data on international tourism receipts and expenditure for 2012 covering at least the first nine months of the year confirm the positive trend in arrivals.

Among the top ten tourist destinations, receipts were up significantly in Hong Kong (China) (+16%), the USA (+10%), the UK (+6%) and Germany (+5%). At the same time, a significant number of destinations around the world saw receipts from international tourism increase by 15% or more – Japan (+37%), India and South Africa (both +22%), Sweden and the Republic of Korea (both +19%), Thailand (+18%) and Poland (+16%).

Traditional source markets show renewed dynamism 

Although the highest growth rates in expenditure abroad among the ten top markets came from emerging economies – China (+42%) and Russia (+31%) – important traditional source markets, showed particularly good results. In Europe, and despite economic pressures, expenditure on international tourism by Germany held well at +3%, while the UK (+5%) returned to growth after two flat years. In the Americas, both the USA and Canada grew at 7%. On the other hand, France (-7%) and Italy (-2%) registered declines in travel expenditure.

Smaller markets with significant growth were Venezuela (+31%), Poland (+19%), Philippines (+17%), Malaysia (+15%), Saudi Arabia (+14%), Belgium (+13%), Norway and Argentina (both +12%), Switzerland and Indonesia (both +10%).

More infoUNWTO

More Trends? Check out the latest Tourism & Travel Trends in TrendSpotting 2013!

Know Your Markets – Multinational Vacation Habits Revealed

Expedia just released its Vacation Deprivation Study, an annual analysis of vacation habits across multiple countries and continents. The 2011 study spans North America, Europe, Asia, South America and Australia. It reveals who gets – and takes – the most vacation time, as well as attitudes toward vacation. Common themes impacting how and where respondents vacation include money, romance and disapproving bosses.

Key findings include:

Europeans lead the world in vacationing. On the whole, European workers enjoy considerably more vacation time, as measured by days given and days taken, than their peers elsewhere. The average employed European earns 25-30 vacation days in a given year, and, with some exceptions, tends to use them all. Brazilians treat vacation as the Europeans do – as a vital part of being employed, rather than a luxury. The study showed that Brazilian workers receive 30 vacation days and enjoy every one of them.

Americans treat vacation as a luxury rather than a fact of life. Americans receive roughly half the Europeans’ allotment of vacation time. In 2011, employed Americans earned 14 vacation days and took 12, a decrease from 2010. The median number of vacation days US workers earned in 2010 was 15 days; the number taken was 12. In comparison, the French earned 30 vacation days, and took all 30 in 2011. In 2010, the average French worker used all but one of their vacation days.

American vacation habits are more like Asians’ than Europeans’. Asia represents the most vacation-deprived region in the 2011 Vacation Deprivation study. Japanese workers trailed the field, taking a mere five vacation days out of 11 available, while South Korean respondents enjoyed seven out of a possible ten days of vacation. Last year, Japanese workers left six vacation days on the table, trailing only the Italians. Italian respondents reported that they left seven vacation days unused in the past year, more than any other nation, though Italians are not precisely vacation-deprived, having 28 days at their disposal.

Money and planning are the most commonly-cited reasons for not taking vacation. Overall, 22% of respondents said they believed they could not afford it, and 20% said “lack of planning.” The US leads the world in money worries: 1 out of 3 Americans say that they can’t afford vacation. However, almost 50% of US workers describe their financial situation as “solid” or “good,” which reinforces the notion that Americans view vacation as a luxury. Brazilian respondents, on the other hand, were least likely to see money as a vacation impediment (6%). Brazilians chose “lack of planning” as their top reason.

The world’s least supportive bosses work in Italy and South Korea. Most workers reported that their bosses are largely supportive of vacation – Americans find that 73% of their bosses are supportive. The reverse was true in Italy (56% boss disapproval) and South Korea (52%), where respondents were most likely to believe management frowns on employee vacations or were unsure. Work/life balance seems to be most prevalent in northern Europe, with Norway and Sweden boasting the highest boss-approval percentages (88% and 82%, respectively.)

Most vacationers find it difficult to disconnect from work. The Danish find it easiest – only one in seven respondents from Denmark report that they check email and voicemail regularly while on break, with more than 50% refusing to check in even once. Americans, too, prefer to disconnect when on vacation, with only 25% checking in regularly, and 75% checking in sometimes or never. More than 50% of French, Japanese, Indian and Italian workers remain tightly connected to the office while on vacation.

Most people prefer beaches over romance. Globally, beach vacations are king. Twice as many respondents cited beach vacations as their preference, versus “romantic holidays with spouse” – except in South Korea, which overwhelmingly chose “romantic holidays” (45% versus 27% favoring the beach). Romance was the preferred option for the Japanese as well, unlike Argentineans and Mexicans, who were four or five times as likely to select the beach as they were to choose a romantic holiday, a city getaway or an outdoor adventure. The Dutch were the outdoorsiest vacationers, while Singaporeans prefer the city.

Source: www.expedia.comwww.ftnnews.com

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ORIGINALLY POSTED BY HOTELMARKETING.COM

Will large players such as Google make significant strides to improve the travel search process? Will other global travel brands emerge to assist the consumer in not only booking their trip but inspiring them and offering relevant options when they are travelling? A new Travelport report takes a closer look.

Business and leisure travellers naturally expect that the rapid improvement in technology and connectivity should improve their experience when they travel. However, the reality can be very different. Travel suppliers are increasing complexity through the unbundling of their products and introduction of ancillary services, the Internet often provides an insufficient means of navigating the vast array of travel options and only basic mobile functionality is available in most regions.

What will change in the future? Will large players such as Google make significant strides to improve the travel search process? Will other global travel brands emerge to assist the consumer in not only booking their trip but inspiring them and offering relevant options when they are travelling?

Travelport engaged The Futures Company to conduct global research into the whole of the end to end travel process consumers undertake from inspiration to shopping and booking to post trip evaluation.

Download the full report at Travelport (PDF 1.9 MB)