Why Travel is a Hot Industry

A recent study shows just how large the travel industry is and why it is so important to the global economy.

The “Sizing the Worldwide Travel Economy” study, conducted by Oxford Economics in partnership with TripAdvisor found that the travel industry reached more than $5.29 trillion USDin spending in 2017, with international tourism spend growing for the last eight consecutive years.

By comparing world economic growth data with TripAdvisor’s own trends, the study was also able to show that the online portal had an enormous estimated influence of $546 billionin 2017 alone. Globally, the popular travel site influenced more than 433 million trips last year, and 65 million in just the United Statesalone last year. 

For access to the full Oxford Economic study, click here.

Global Travel Economy Healthy and Growing
The Oxford Economics “Sizing the Worldwide Travel Economy” paints a picture of a healthy and growing travel economy, with the greatest surges in travel spending over the last few years resulting from the APAC, Middle Eastand Latin American regions.

At $3.9 trillionper year, domestic tourism spend accounts for around three-quarters of global tourism spend, while international spending grew to $1.4 trillionin 2017.

Largest Tourism Sectors:
When looking at how the travel economy breaks out by sector worldwide, a few key findings stand out, including how a piece of the total traveler economy is spent on retail sales:

 

Inbound Travel

Domestic Travel

Accommodation

22.4%

14.6%

Transportation

29.3%

34.0%

Recreation, culture & sports

6.5%

7.7%

Retail

20.0%

17.5%

Food & beverages services

14.8%

15.3%

Other

7.1%

10.8%

 

Top Growth Markets:
While the North Americatravel economy has grown by +25% in the past 10 years, the Asia-Pacificmarket has grown by +130%. In contrast, Western European destinations have largely remained flat during this time.

Destination region

2017 spend (US$ trillions)

Growth 2007 – 2017

Global

5.29

41.9%

APAC

1.89

130.3%

Middle East

0.15

93.8%

Latin America/Caribbean

0.28

42.1%

Africa

0.12

26.4%

North America

1.20

24.9%

Emerging Europe

0.23

16.0%

Western Europe

1.42

2.9%

 

Other Key Industry Trends Revealed:

  • Tourism growth has outpaced global GDP growth
  • Roughly half of all international trips are to European destinations, while destinations in the Asia-Pacificregion are taking a greater share of travel
  • International travel is expected to become more important as household wealth continues to rise in large emerging markets, with a greater proportion of households able to afford international travel.
  • Nearly 1 in 10 employees globally is supported by tourism activity

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