World Tourism Organization reports 4% growth in global tourism during H1 2019

Α Decrease font Enlarge font
World Tourism Organization reports 4% growth in global tourism during H1 2019Destinations worldwide received 671 million international tourist arrivals between January and June 2019, almost 30 million more than in the same period of 2018

International tourist arrivals grew 4% from January to June 2019, compared to the same period last year, according to the latest UNWTO World Tourism Barometer published ahead of the 23rd World Tourism Organization General Assembly. Growth was led by the Middle East (+8%) and Asia and the Pacific (+6%). International arrivals in Europe grew 4%, while Africa (+3%) and the Americas (+2%) enjoyed more moderate growth.

Destinations worldwide received 671 million international tourist arrivals between January and June 2019, almost 30 million more than in the same period of 2018 and a continuation of the growth recorded last year.

Growth in arrivals is returning to its historic trend and is in line with UNWTO’s forecast of 3% to 4% growth in international tourist arrivals for the full year 2019, as reported in the January Barometer.

So far, the drivers of these results have been a strong economy, affordable air travel, increased air connectivity and enhanced visa facilitation. However, weaker economic indicators, prolonged uncertainty about Brexit, trade and technological tensions and rising geopolitical challenges, have started to take a toll on business and consumer confidence, as reflected in a more cautious UNWTO Confidence Index.

Regional Performance

Europe grew 4% in the first six months of 2019, with a positive first quarter followed by an above-average second quarter (April: +8% and June: +6%), reflecting a busy Easter and the start of the summer season in the world’s most visited region. Intraregional demand fueled much of this growth, though performance among major European source markets was uneven, amid weakening economies. Demand from overseas markets such as the USA, China, Japan and the countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) also contributed to these positive results.

Asia and the Pacific (+6%) recorded above world average growth during the January-June 2019 period, largely fueled by Chinese outbound travel. Growth was led by South Asia and North-East Asia (both +7%), followed by South-East Asia (+5%), and arrivals in Oceania increased by 1%.

In the Americas (+2%), results improved in the second quarter after a weak start of the year. The Caribbean (+11%) benefitted from strong US demand and continued to rebound strongly from the impact of hurricanes Irma and Maria in late 2017, a challenge which the region unfortunately faces once again. North America recorded 2% growth, while Central America (+1%) showed mixed results. In South America, arrivals were down 5% partly due to a decline in outbound travel from Argentina which affected neighboring destinations.

In Africa, limited available data points to a 3% increase in international arrivals. North Africa (+9%) continues to show robust results, following two years of double-digit figures, while growth in Sub-Saharan Africa was flat (+0%).

The Middle East (+8%) saw two strong quarters, reflecting a positive winter season, as well as an increase in demand during Ramadan in May and Eid Al-Fitr in June. 

Source Markets – mixed results amid trade tensions and economic uncertainty 

Performance has been uneven across major tourism outbound markets.

Chinese outbound tourism (+14% in trips abroad) continued to drive arrivals in many destinations in the region during the first half of the year though spending on international travel was 4% lower in real terms in the first quarter. Trade tensions with the USA as well as the slight depreciation of the yuan, may influence destination choice by Chinese travelers in the short term.

Outbound travel from the USA, the world’s second largest spender, remained solid (+7%), supported by a strong dollar. In Europe, spending on international tourism by France (+8%) and Italy (+7%) was robust, though the United Kingdom (+3%) and Germany (+2%) reported more moderate figures.

Among the Asian markets, spending from Japan (+11%) was strong while the Republic of Korea spent 8% less in the first half of 2019, partly due to the depreciation of the Korean won. Australia spent 6% more on international tourism.

The Russian Federation saw a 4% decline in spending in the first quarter, following two years of a strong rebound. Spending out of Brazil and Mexico were down 5% and 13% respectively, partly reflecting the wider situation of the two largest Latin American economies.

UNWTO Confidence Index International Tourism Arrivals

Tornos
  1. 18/10 20:37

    Greek olive oil more attractive in the US than Spain's

  2. 18/10 20:21

    Greek businesses to pay 30% less tax on average in 2019

  3. 18/10 19:50

    Scientists discover Greek island of Naxos was inhabited at least 200,000 years ago

  4. 18/10 19:33

    Virtuoso | Luxury tourism: Greece among top destinations in the world for 2020

  5. 18/10 19:21

    20,000 migrants and refugees transferred from islands to Greek mainland

  6. 18/10 19:14

    Tourism/ IPK-ITB: Asia remains the biggest tourism growth market

  7. 18/10 18:35

    Prime Minister: EU leaders adopted Greece's position on managing migration

  8. 18/10 18:28

    Marriott buys iconic hotel W in New York

  9. 18/10 18:01

    City break tourism report: Athens Riviera dream draws closer to reality

  10. 18/10 16:40

    General Manager at the Brown Acropol Hotel in Athens

  11. 18/10 13:24

    EU to support member-states facing gravest challenges from migration flows

  12. 18/10 12:16

    Discover Greece presents Aegean islands

  13. 18/10 10:07

    Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew: The climate crisis concerns all of us

  14. 17/10 20:32

    New York Greek Film Festival opens with attractive artistic program

  15. 17/10 20:28

    Greece and China sign updated economic cooperation framework for 2020-22

  16. 17/10 19:59

    Navarino Challenge 2019: 2,700 participations from 40 countries

  17. 17/10 17:06

    Cystat: More Cypriot residents travelled overseas in September

  18. 17/10 17:03

    Tourist arrivals in Cyprus grow by 0.9% in September 2019

  19. 17/10 16:57

    Embassy of Greece in Washington presents Zeus the Mighty show on November 2

  20. 17/10 16:55

    CNN Travel reveals Greece’s top villages to visit

  21. 17/10 16:50

    Bank of Greece: Budget recorded primary surplus of €3.9 billion in Jan-Sept

  22. 17/10 16:45

    AP: UK and EU reach outline Brexit deal which still needs ratification

  23. 17/10 16:39

    National Theatre in Athens puts on seven English-surtitled performances

  24. 17/10 16:33

    More control and less waiting: Top priorities for airplane passengers

  25. 17/10 16:29

    Air China to continue three flights every week to Greece during the winter

  26. 17/10 16:23

    Greece and France sign letter of intent for purchase of two FDI frigates

  27. 17/10 12:18

    Reuters: Wind Hellas bonds could be used for dividend payments

  28. 17/10 12:13

    Veteran anchorman honored at New York City Greek Film Festival

  29. 17/10 11:58

    Enjoy a taste of Greece in Qatar

  30. 17/10 11:45

    Ancient Greek mathematics unveil the most beautiful woman in the world

  31. 17/10 11:41

    2020 Greek state budget draft foresees 5% drop in corporate income tax

  32. 17/10 11:36

    Winter heating oil 11% cheaper as sales commence in Greece

  33. 17/10 11:31

    Greek Prime Minister in Brussels for European Union Summit

  34. 17/10 11:23

    Greece’s economy forecast to grow faster than Australia’s in 2019

  35. 17/10 11:08

    Interparty committee on voting rights of Greeks abroad holds first meeting

  36. 16/10 20:49

    RWE CEO's high-level contacts in Athens drive speculation over PPC interest

  37. 16/10 20:29

    President launches events for 2,500th anniversary of Thermopylae and Salamis

  38. 16/10 20:17

    New survey: Fewer Greeks smoke during last decade

  39. 16/10 20:08

    PM sends message of unity on 2,500-year anniversary of Thermopylae and Salamis

  40. 16/10 19:44

    France blocks EU membership ambitions of North Macedonia and Albania

  41. 16/10 19:22

    Culture Ministry: Visitable underwater ancient sites a bold project of high responsibility

  42. 16/10 18:52

    Media: Greek government plans €139 million 'bonus' towards enterprises

  43. 16/10 18:45

    Minister Theocharis: Tourism industry needs positive impact of sustainability

  44. 16/10 18:29

    Dodecanese Federation event in Connecticut honors Rhodes’ 1919 Bloody Easter

  45. 16/10 18:20

    Jennifer Aniston's first post on Instagram platform reaches 10 million likes

  46. 16/10 17:51

    EU prepares sanctions against Turkey over its provocative behaviour

  47. 16/10 17:32

    European Union Commission approves Greek 2020 draft budget

  48. 16/10 16:24

    Doctor from reality tv-show Botched marries Greek-American girl on Santorini

  49. 16/10 14:54

    Lamda eyeing partners for huge Elliniko development project in Athens

  50. 16/10 14:15

    Greek Minister and new French Ambassador stress need for close cooperation

  51. 16/10 13:35

    Tesla tribute at Museum of Ancient Greek Technology in central Athens

  52. 16/10 11:31

    Stricter rules for casino payments to social security funds and staff in Greece

  53. 16/10 10:46

    Greek FinMin in Washington DC to attend IMF and World Bank meeting

  54. 15/10 22:09

    Hybrid tolling system in Olympia Motorway to operate in Greece during 2020

  55. 15/10 20:53

    Acclaimed Greek fashion designer Sophia Kokosalaki passes away at age 47

  56. 15/10 20:46

    Technology to drive advances in air passenger experience and infrastructure

  57. 15/10 20:40

    Feasibility studies this month for 10 regional ports across Greece

  58. 15/10 20:35

    IMF lowers growth forecasts for Greece to 2% in 2019 and 2.2% in 2020

  59. 15/10 20:13

    63 paid internship positions at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation in Greece

  60. 15/10 20:00

    Cyprus and Greece set up cooperation mechanism on economic agenda

  61. 15/10 19:42

    Ryanair launches 14 new routes in Greece for Summer 2020

  62. 15/10 18:36

    Precious gold jewels found at Lord Elgin’s shipwreck off Greek island of Kythira

  63. 15/10 18:00

    New generation of PPP infrastructure projects under preparation in Greece

  64. 15/10 14:00

    Hellenikon developer expects big revenues from luxury residences in Athens

  65. 15/10 12:05

    UNWTO leads key discussions on sector trends and outlooks

  66. 14/10 22:16

    5th Pan-Hellenic Congress of Thermal Medicine organized in Kamena Vourla

  67. 14/10 22:05

    Queen Elizabeth responds to Philhellene’s plea for return of Elgin Marbles

  68. 14/10 21:55

    First micro-brewery Athens Craft Beer Festival between October 18-20

  69. 14/10 21:49

    Draft bill for Greek Diaspora abroad vote heading for Parliament in Athens

  70. 14/10 19:59

    Religious Tourism: Greece adopts autocephaly of the Church of Ukraine

  71. 14/10 19:39

    Greek PM talks investments with Deutsche Telekoms and Enel Green Power

  72. 14/10 19:38

    €300 million wind farm complex inaugurated on Greek island of Evia

  73. 14/10 19:25

    Greek budget showed primary surplus of 4.479 billion euros in January-September

  74. 14/10 19:06

    Greek government offers incentives to attract the world’s super-rich

  75. 14/10 16:41

    Explore oldest underwater “lost city” in the Mediterranean off Greek island of Pavlopetri (video)

  76. 14/10 14:54

    Alien fish species from Red Sea the focus of study in Aegean Sea of Greece

  77. 14/10 10:24

    Sunshine and high temperatures in Greece on Tuesday

  78. 13/10 20:20

    Sports Tourism: World’s most disruptive start-ups marked at Macau event

  79. 13/10 17:44

    Greek-American Massachusetts student wins “Philotimo” competition in US

  80. 13/10 17:34

    Port Jefferson AHEPA Chapter 319 hosts second successful annual fishing trip

  81. 13/10 12:22

    Annual meeting of Visitor International organized in Athens for the first time

  82. 13/10 11:36

    Culture Tourism: The Minotaur of Crete moved Greece, Rome, art, literature, and myth

  83. 13/10 11:29

    Greek government bill to regulate “red” loans by end of October

  84. 13/10 10:57

    Greece plans to promote manufacturing in Attica through industrial and business parks

  85. 13/10 10:48

    Commissioner Moscovici interview: Greece is regaining its credibility (video)

  86. 13/10 10:25

    First crematorium in Greece operational 70 kilometers northeast of Athens

  87. 13/10 10:15

    SETE President: Full extent of problems from Thomas Cook collapse 'not yet apparent'

  88. 12/10 17:38

    Greece-based firm takes part in $249 million USMC contract for night-vision goggles

  89. 12/10 17:27

    National Historical Museum in Athens pays tribute to Greek Revolution

  90. 12/10 17:22

    Cypriot and Jordanian enterprises jointly explore investment opportunities

  91. 12/10 17:16

    Fall in fish farming output will trigger price rebound in Greece

  92. 12/10 14:07

    October 12, 1944: The date of Athens' liberation from Nazi forces

  93. 12/10 14:00

    Greek Tourism: Canada and Australia become top source markets

  94. 12/10 13:52

    New development bill to encourage investments in Greek mass media

  95. 12/10 13:46

    Greek Freak NBA star Giannis Antetokounmpo set to become a dad

  96. 12/10 13:42

    Athens Declaration adopted by EU heads of states at Arraiolos Group Meeting

  97. 12/10 13:39

    Record 60,000 athletes to compete in Athens Marathon

  98. 12/10 13:34

    Greek Education Minister meets new Israeli Ambassador Yossi Amrani

  99. 12/10 13:30

    Global city leaders adopt ‘Nur-Sultan Declaration’ on Smart Cities

  100. 12/10 13:16

    27 new affiliate members greenlighted at 23rd UNWTO General Assembly