The growth and growth of tourism

By | Category: Travel news
a beach in the Canary islands

The Canary Isles and the rest of Spain will still attract many of us 2018

Tourism has grown so strongly over the last few years that doom mongers are prone to say there will be a slowdown. In particular they say that currency movements and Brexit, Trump and anything else they can come up with will deter people from holidaying.

So far that hasn’t come to pass and with the release of new figures for the first third of this year from the United nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) it looks as though there will be no downturn this year either.
Given that Europe sees twice as many tourists as the rest of the world put together you would expect that Europe might not be able to grow much more. But it is. In the period January to the end of April this year growth was 7% beaten only by the Asia/Pacific region. If this continues it will be another boom year for Europe but it will also confound the experts whose forecasts tended to be in the region of 3.5% to 5% at the most optimistic. UNWTO was forecasting an annual growth of between four and five per cent

Overall, international tourism grew by 6% in the first third of 2018 so Europe outperformed the average figure.
Why should tourism be continuing to grow?

One significant reason is that governments and destinations around the world are spending considerable sums of money either in cash or kind to get us to visit them. As the new UNWTO Secretary-General, Zurab Pololikashvili said in his press release, ““International tourism continues to show significant growth worldwide, and this translates into job creation in many economies.” Governments want more jobs to weather the decade old effect of the banking crisis and tourism has provided faster income and new jobs for them than any other industry.

Will this growth continue for the rest of 2018? The UNWTO Panel of Tourism Experts outlook for the May-August period is one the most optimistic in a decade. With the hot weather we have had over Europe for the last fortnight encouraging people outside I can see no reason to disagree with them.

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