New research from the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) reveals that the French capital, Paris, is the world's leading urban destination, but predicts that it will be overtaken by Beijing by 2032.
The report, sponsored by Visa and researched in partnership with Oxford Economics, analyzed key indicators such as the contribution of travel and tourism to GDP, employment and traveler spending.
COVID-19 had a devastating impact on the Travel & Tourism sector and in particular on large cities around the world as countries closed their borders in response to the pandemic.
As borders have reopened, many leisure travelers have shifted city visits to less populated destinations, such as coastal and rural destinations, but the latest research from the WTTC shows that city breaks are back and growing in popularity. .
Paris takes the crown as the world's most powerful urban destination with a travel and tourism sector worth nearly $36BN USD in 2022, in terms of direct GDP contribution to the city.
In the next 10 years, WTTC predicts that it will fall to third place, although its value will increase to more than $49 billion dollars.
Beijing is currently the second largest urban destination in the world with a travel and tourism sector worth nearly $33 billion USD. However, WTTC predicts that it will overtake Paris in the next 10 years, growing to a staggering $77 billion.
Often dubbed the theme park capital of the world, Orlando's travel and tourism sector was valued at $31 billion in 2022, but despite predictions suggesting it will grow nearly 50% to $45 billion by 2032, it will fall to become the fourth largest urban destination.
China's domestic travel and tourism sector has experienced phenomenal growth in the past decade, as the country has invested in new hotels, transportation infrastructure, and new tourist destinations.
This investment in Travel & Tourism projects Shanghai's sector, worth nearly $30 billion last year, to double to nearly $71 billion by 2032, to become the second most powerful urban destination in the world. world.
Las Vegas is the only city on the top 10 list to maintain its place, holding firmly as the 5th largest city destination.
Last year, Las Vegas' travel and tourism sector was worth nearly $23 billion USD and is projected to grow to over $36 billion USD by 2032.
Julia Simpson, President and CEO of the WTTC, said: "Major cities like London, Paris and New York will remain global powerhouses, but in the years to come, Beijing, Shanghai and Macau will move up the list of top urban destinations.
" Tourists will always have favorite cities to return to, but as other countries prioritize travel and tourism, we will see new and emerging destinations challenging traditional favourites."
Other cities outside the top 10 showing promising growth as destinations Emerging markets include the Polish capital of Warsaw, which has seen a 14.4% increase in its contribution to GDP in 2022 compared to 2019.
Sanya, the Chinese coastal city that has become a popular tourist destination in recent years as tourists flocked to its stunning beaches, saw growth of 10.2% over the same period. Its travel and tourism sector accounts for an incredible 43.6% of the city's total economy. Macau's travel and tourism sector accounts for 40.4% of the city's total economy.
Orlando and Las Vegas are the only cities currently in the top 10 most powerful urban destinations by sector value, which rely heavily on the sector as part of the overall city economy.
Travel and tourism accounts for 20.4% of Orlando's economy and 16.3% of Las Vegas' economy. By comparison, Paris' travel and tourism sector accounts for just 3.5% of the capital's economy in 2022.
The top five cities with the highest international traveler spending in 2022 were:
Dubai - $29.42MM
Doha - $16.79MM
London - $16.07MM
Macau - $15.58MM
Amsterdam - $13.59MM
Istanbul - $13.13MM
Barcelona - $12.73MM
New York - $12.45MM
Singapore - $10.97MM
Paris - $9.76MM
By 2032, WTTC predicts that the five cities with the highest spending by international travelers will change to be:
Hong Kong - $52.06BN (38 places more than in 2022)
Macau - $43.14BN (two places more than 2022)
Dubai - $42.98BN (two places less than 2022)
Singapore - $37.43BN (five places more than 2022)
Bangkok - $33.45BN (seven places more than 2022)
Doha - $31.63BN (four places down from 2022)
Tokyo $25.44BN (up 30 places from 2022)
New York $21.73BN (no change from 2022)
Amsterdam $21.53BN (four places down from 2022)
Shanghai - $21.3BN (11 places more than in 2022)
Over the next decade, travel and tourism is on track to become a key driver of economic growth once again, with GDP growing faster than other sectors, generating 126 million new jobs around the world.