Global tourism will exceed one billion travelers in 2014
Global tourism is set to post a new record of over 1 billion trips this year.
The UNWTO Tourism Barometer report says a total of 1.1 billion international tourists will have traveled by the end of this year.
From January to October 2014, it recorded 978 million overnight stays, a 5% increase on the same period last year.
By region, the strongest growth was registered in the Americas (+8%), followed by Asia and the Pacific (+5%) and Europe (+4%). By subregion, North America (+9%) and South Asia (+8%) were the star performers, as well as Southern and Mediterranean Europe, North-East Asia and Northern Europe (all +7%).
"In view of this trend, international tourism is set to end 2014 with record numbers", said UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai.
These are remarkable results considering that different parts of the world continue to face significant geopolitical and health challenges, while the global economic recovery remains rather fragile and uneven."
"More importantly, we see a growing political commitment to the tourism sector in many countries."
Africa’s international tourist numbers grew by 3% (through October) with North Africa consolidating its recovery (+2%). Sub-Saharan Africa’s arrivals were up by 3% despite the challenges of the Ebola Disease Outbreak in a few West African countries. Data for Africa and the Middle East, nonetheless, should be read with caution as it is based on limited and volatile data for these regions.