China Will Be the World's Most Popular Tourist Destination by 2030
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France has been a top tourist destination for years—it's not in any way surprising, rather like saying cheese is delicious. Well, yeah. But research from global research company Euromonitor International shows a fascinating new trend: China will likely dethrone the European nation to become the world's top tourist destination by 2030.
Wouter Geerts, consultant at Euromonitor and author of the research, said rapid economic growth in Asia, loosened visa restrictions to China, and a booming middle class with higher incomes in places like Hong Kong and Taiwan have led to the increased flow of visitors to China, reports The Guardian. (At present, some 80 percent of people traveling in Asia come from Asia.) Major sporting events—see the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics and the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics—will also provide a significant boost in international travel to the region, Geerts said.
That's not all. In addition to drawing the most inbound travelers, China will also have the world's largest number of outbound travelers, cementing the Middle Kingdom's place as a travel powerhouse. As Traveler's Mark Ellwood recently reported, Chinese tourists are already changing the travel landscape—and it's only just beginning: The United Nations World Tourism Organization reports that Chinese outbound tourism expenditure grew to $261 billion in 2016, an increase of 12 percent from 2015 and 11 times the amount spent a decade earlier. It's a staggering number, especially when you consider that currently, only about nine percent of China's population has a passport, compared to 40 percent of Americans and all but five percent of Brits. That nine percent? A cool 120 million people—or as we like to put it, twice the population of Italy.© Getty
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