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China tops two-way tourism


BANGKOK, 16 March 2018: China and Hong Kong SAR will lead Asia-Pacific destinations in terms of growth over the next five years for both inbound and outbound travel, according to PATA’s Asia-Pacific Visitor Forecasts 2018-2022.

Following an earlier Pacific Asia Travel Association summary, the full report provides comprehensive data on origin-destination pairs for 40 Asia-Pacific destinations.

The report also offers insights on tourism receipts and income monitors examples of price elasticity, where data permit.

Growth curve 2018

Asia Pacific destinations are forecast to receive more than 673 million international visitor arrivals in 2018, up around 42 million on the estimated volume received in 2017.

Hong Kong SAR, China and Turkey lead the way with annual increases of 7.9 million, 4.1 million and 3.8 million foreign arrivals respectively.

Destinations in the Americas register highly as well, with the USA and Mexico in particular, expected to show annual increases in inbound foreign arrivals of 3.6 million and 2.6 million respectively.

The major international visitor-generating markets will be China, Hong Kong SAR and Korea (ROK) with those three origin markets producing a collective increase of close to 20 million additional IVAs into Asia-Pacific by the close of 2018.

In the Americas, Canada and the USA will generate an additional 2.7 million arrivals. In total, seven origin markets will add volume increases of more than 1 million foreign arrivals each, from Asia (four origin markets), the Americas (two origin markets) and Europe (one origin market).

Across the arrivals-generating regions, it is expected that Asia will account for 68% of the additional volume received by Asia-Pacific destinations between 2017 and 2018; Europe will produce close to 13% and the Americas a little under 11%.

East Europe is expected to produce some solid gains over this period as well, especially out of the Russian Federation and Poland with each of these origin markets producing well over 600,000 additional arrivals each, in the two years ending 2018.

Out of the Pacific, Australia will also be a solid producer of foreign arrivals into Asia-Pacific, adding more than 780,000 additional arrivals over this period.

Foreign visitor through to 2022

By 2022, it is expected that China will consolidate its position as the number one destination in Asia-Pacific, capturing a fifth of the total volume of foreign arrivals into the region in that year.

Hong Kong SAR and the USA follow in terms of the absolute volume of foreign arrivals by 2022, but China has a lead of more than 64 million over Hong Kong SAR, its closest contender.

Mexico and Turkey will figure in the top five inbound ranking by absolute volume in 2022 and together, these top five destinations account for well over half (55.5%) of all the foreign visitor arrivals into Asia-Pacific in that year.

Of the 177 million additional foreign arrivals into Asia-Pacific, generated over the five-year period ending 2022, 72% will come from Asian origin markets, 10% from European markets and a little over 9% will come from origin markets in the Americas.

The strongest Asian market generators of additional visitor arrivals through to 2022 will be China and Hong Kong SAR representing increases of 64.5 million and 13 million.

Other strong generating markets for outbound travel will be Korea (ROK), Thailand and India with incremental increases of 8 million, 4.3 million and 3.2 million respectively.

Out of Europe, it is expected that the strongest incremental gains in volume of arrivals between 2017 and 2022 will come from Germany, France and the Russian Federation, with increases of 2.9 million, 2.3 million and 2.2 million respectively. Poland (1.9 million additional arrivals) and the United Kingdom (1.5 million additional arrivals) will make up the top five origin markets ranking by incremental increase in the volume of arrivals over that period.

From the Americas, the big three, Canada, the USA and Mexico, will generate the most additional volume of arrivals (5.3 million, 4.6 million and 2.2 million) with Argentina and Brazil closing out that top five list with gains of 1.3 million and 0.8 million respectively.

The Pacific also fields a strong supplier of additional foreign arrivals, with Australia producing a period increase of more than 3.1 million, to place it within the top ten list of the strongest generators of incremental volume between 2017 and 2022.

How spending grows

For the 25 destinations in this report where such data are available, it appears that total receipts from international tourism will increase from USD 710 billion in 2017 to more than USD 755 billion in 2018 and continue to grow to 2022 when tourism expenditure is expected to reach more than USD 955 billion.

Asia on the other hand, is expected to see its receipts from tourism increase from USD 409 billion in 2017 to USD 447 billion in 2018, and to almost USD 625 billion by 2022. This moves the relative share position of Asia in terms of receipts from international tourism among this group of destinations, from 57.6% in 2017 to 59.2% in 2017 and 65.4% by 2022. The Asian AAGR for tourism receipts between 2017 and 2022 is expected to be around 8.8% with Northeast and South Asia showing even stronger average growth with AAGRS of 9.6% and 9.3% respectively.

This Asian growth will be at the expense of not just the Americas, but also the Pacific region where the relative share position will decline from 6.3% in 2017 to 5.5% in 2022, even while tourism receipts grow at an average of 3.2% per annum over that period.

“The growth momentum of Asia-Pacific as both a receiver and a generator of international visitors – not just into Asia-Pacific but globally – and the receipts that they generate, is set to continue to at least 2022,” said PATA CEO, Mario Hardy.

“As is always the case, growth in international arrivals across Asia-Pacific is often unequal, with subtle changes and shifts occurring as travellers discover new destinations and increasingly turn away from those that do not offer the experiences and memories that they seek and demand or that in themselves are, for whatever reason, seen as unstable and unsafe”.

The full Asia-Pacific Visitor Forecasts 2018-2022 can be purchased directly from PATA’s website:

PATA corporate members: Complimentary
PATA members USD 1000
Chapter members USD1,500
Non-members USD 2,000

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