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Travel & tourism responsible for 7 million jobs worldwide

1024 683 Katy Phillips

New research has revealed that travel & tourism was responsible for the creation of 7 million new jobs worldwide.

2017 was a particularly good year for the travel industry, which grew at 4.6%, outgrowing the global economy for the seventh connective year (3% growth in 2017).

Commissioned by WTTC’s annual Economic Impact Research, the study found that Travel & Tourism was the fastest growing broad economic sector globally, with stronger growth than retail and wholesale (3.4%), manufacturing (4.2%), agriculture, forestry and fisheries (2.6%) and financial services (2.5%).

Commenting on the report, Gloria Guevara, WTTC president & CEO, said: “Travel & Tourism creates jobs, drives economic growth and helps build better societies. Our research shows that our sector was responsible for the creation of one in five of all jobs globally. In the last few years, Governments around the world are realising the extraordinary benefits of tourism and I congratulate them for taking steps to maximise the potential of our sector.

“2017 was the best year on record for the Travel & Tourism sector. We have seen increased spending as a result of growing consumer confidence, both domestically and internationally, recovery in markets in North Africa and Europe previously impacted by terrorism and continued outbound growth from China and India. This is great news for the millions of people who depend on our sector for their livelihoods.”

Direct, Indirect & Induced Impact

Travel & Tourism’s direct, indirect and induced impact in 2017 accounted for:

  • US$8.3 trillion contribution to global GDP (10.4%)
  • 313 million jobs, one in 10 around the world
  • US$1.5 trillion exports (6.5% of total exports, 28.8% of global services exports)
  • US$882 billion investment (4.5% of total investment)

Some of the leading highlights globally include:

  • Europe’s performance was better than previously expected with 4.8% growth as long-haul demand (dampened in 2016 by terrorism concerns) recovered strongly, accompanied by strong intra-regional travel thanks to the strength of the European economy. In 2017, European airlines recorded passenger growth of 8.1% and over 1 billion passengers for the first time
  • Travel & Tourism’s contribution to GDP in North Africa grew by 22.6% in 2017, showing a strong rebound from the impacts of terrorism in previous years. Stellar performance from Egypt (72.9%) and solid growth in Tunisia (7.6%) inspire confidence in the region as tourism activity continues to recover to pre-attack levels
  • Asian countries continue to drive global tourism growth with North East Asia growing at 7.4% and South East Asia at 6.7%. China continues to lead the way at 9.8%. Over the next ten years over one third of absolute GDP growth and nearly half of employment growth will be generated by China and India
  • Latin America showed a decline of 1.4% in tourism GDP, largely a result of a contraction in international spend to the largest Latin American economy, Brazil, of 18.1% compared to 2016, and compounded by the ongoing political and economic problems in Venezuela

Looking ahead

Guevara added: “As our sector continues to become more important both as a generator of GDP and jobs, our key challenge will be ensuring this growth is sustainable and inclusive.  Already in 2017, we have begun to see a backlash against tourism in some key destinations. Going forward we need to ensure that growth is planned for, well managed and includes partnerships between not only the public and private sectors but also includes communities themselves. There is a huge opportunity for governments to capitalise on the opportunities Travel & Tourism brings to create new jobs, especially in those economies where many jobs are threatened by new technologies.  WTTC looks forward to partnering with governments around the world to ensure benefits for all.”

Forecasts suggest slower growth in 2018 than 2017 as a result of higher oil prices. By 2028 Trevel & Tourism is expected to support over 400 million jobs globally, equating to one in nine jobs worldwide, with the sector contributing to 25% of global net job creation over the next decade.

WTTC’s Economic Impact Research is the only global dataset on the economic impact of Travel & Tourism, covering 185 countries and 20 regional groupings. It can be accessed at www.wttc.org.

Guest Blog: virtuoso reveals 2018 traveller trends

999 553 Daniel Fountain

Global luxury travel network Virtuoso has determined 2018 will be the year for discovering less-visited destinations. Virtuoso’s 2018 Luxe Report, which forecasts what to expect in travel for the year ahead, shows the desire for unspoiled natural beauty continuing to motivate travellers.

The annual report, which has firmly established Virtuoso as a recognized trend spotter, reveals consumer preferences in high-end and experiential travel, as discerned from a comprehensive survey of the network’s travel advisors worldwide.

Five must-take trips for 2018, according to Virtuoso advisors:

Cold is hot. Seasoned travelers in search of fresh destinations are setting their sights on chillier climes. Iceland continues to surge in popularity, placing high in several Luxe Report categories this year. Cruisers are enthusiastic about Alaska, and adventurers about Antarctica and the Arctic. One trip of a lifetime mentioned by Virtuoso’s expert advisors: seeing the Northern Lights.

– Exploring new destinations. This is the year’s top trip motivator, and travelers are embracing the opportunity to push beyond their comfort zone. Virtuoso advisors suggest that people check out at least one new place a year, and challenge themselves to try something unexpected during their sojourn: swim with marine life like dolphins or mantas, go zip-lining or ballooning, or take a helicopter tour.

– Connecting with family through travel. After topping the list of trends since 2010, multigenerational travel has firmly established itself as a travel niche. Following close behind is travel with immediate family, also a consistent trend that will carry forward in 2018. Whether renting a European villa for a celebration with loved ones, cruising to the Galapagos Islands, or snorkeling at the Great Barrier Reef, a family trip creates lifelong memories, strengthens bonds, and plays a pivotal role in childhood education.

– Experience Africa. From culturally rich South Africa, also 2018’s top adventure destination, to the wilds of Botswana and Kenya, to the souks of Morocco, Africa is one of the world’s most diverse continents. Virtuoso’s advisors say a safari is an integral part of the African experience, particularly with wildlife preservation a priority for today’s sustainably savvy travelers.

– Be a traveler rather than a tourist. Immersive experiences not found in a guidebook or brochure, opportunities to meet locals, wandering neighborhoods and making spontaneous discoveries are the best ways to experience a destination, according to Virtuoso advisors. Whether it is wine tasting, or learning a traditional craft or a new language, travelers will be seeking out the true culture of that area they are visiting.

The desire for experiences that foster genuine human connection is a key driver for today’s travelers. No activity is too unusual for the clients of Virtuoso travel advisors, as some of the more surprising requests show. Travelers are asking for everything from reaching the edge of space in a MiG-29 flight in Russia, to herding cattle in Australia, to hosting a celebration in a private capsule aboard the London Eye. They also seek rare accommodations such as an igloo in Norway, a private castle all to themselves, and sleeping under the stars in the desert – no tent required.

With the focus on far-flung exotic destinations in 2018, it is not surprising that luxury travelers are embarking on international trips of two weeks or longer, which are seeing strong demand. Week-long international trips and three- to five-day domestic trips continue to be popular as well. What is surprising, though, is that Virtuoso advisors also noted more interest in shorter international trips, such as Machu Picchu and the Galapagos Islands in less than a week. Conversely, some travelers are requesting longer trips of three to five weeks.


trivago Reveals Autumn Traveller Trends for the UK

trivago reveals Autumn traveller trends for UK

750 459 Daniel Fountain

London, as expected, is the most popular destination this autumn with the greatest search volume coming from international travellers. Cardiff has overtaken London by the highest average clicked price among overseas visitors and Germans account for the largest group of travellers from off-shore countries.

This autumn, 64% of all search inquires to UK destinations have been made by domestic travellers. Based on search volume, German travellers make up the largest group of visitors coming from overseas followed by travellers from the US, Ireland, Italy, Spain, Australia, France, the Netherlands, Canada and Denmark.

London is the most searched destination in the UK, accounting for 67% of all UK searches from the top 10 visiting countries. Edinburgh takes the second place followed by Blackpool, the third most popular city for the UK residents. However, Blackpool ranks much lower (closing the top 30) for international travellers who prefer Liverpool.

Lenka Trckova, Industry Management UK & Ireland, Hotel Relations: “Our data shows that travellers from all around the world will pay the highest prices for hotels in London, Cardiff and Liverpool. Cardiff is for overseas visitors even more expensive than London, reaching the average level of £137 per night. We can see a significant difference in search behaviour between international and domestic travellers particularly in London and Edinburgh. For these longstanding popular destinations, UK residents pay roughly £20 more than international visitors.”

The average duration of stay reveals that travellers from the UK will mostly take short two-night trips this autumn. On the contrary, visitors from France, Italy and Denmark are likely to stay longest, as they search for stays of four nights on average.

For further insights and more detailed information about traveller behaviour and popular destinations in the UK, visit the trivago Hotel Manager Blog.

About the data
The 2017 autumn travel trends are based on data gathered from trivago.com searches between 1 June – 2 August 2017, for the period of 1 October – 30 November 2017 and includes searches for stay of three and more days. All prices shown are the average clicked prices selected by trivago users for a standard double room.

UNWTO condemns Donald Trump's travel ban

UNWTO: Trump travel ban will impact US tourism

1023 581 Daniel Fountain

The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the United Nations Specialised Agency for Tourism, has expressed its deep concern and strong condemnation over the recently announced travel ban by the United States of America (USA) to nationals of seven countries (Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen).

The travel ban, based on nationality, is contrary to the principles of freedom of travel and travel facilitation promoted by the international tourism community and will hinder the immense benefits of the tourism sector brings in terms of economic growth and job creation to many countries, including the USA.

“Global challenges demand global solutions and the security challenges that we face today should not prompt us to build new walls; on the contrary, isolationism and blind discriminatory actions will not lead to increased security but rather to growing tensions and threats”, said UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai.

“Besides the direct impact, the image of a country which imposes travel bans in such a hostile way will surely be affected among visitors from all over the world and risk dumping travel demand to the USA” added Mr Rifai.

More and more people are opting for a 'staycation' in the post-Brexit era

Post-Brexit ‘staycation’ boom worth extra £1.4 billion to UK economy

1000 713 Daniel Fountain

The positive impact of the UK’s Brexit decision on the domestic hotel market was revealed last week as official figures show billions of pounds staying in the United Kingdom.

While the surge in UK holidays after the 23 June vote had been predicted, the findings by the Tourism Alliance exclusive to the Mail on Sunday show a huge rise both in visitors from abroad and in Britons opting for a staycation – worth some £1.4 billion to the UK economy.

The extra takings in 2016 for staycations alone are set to be £2.4 billion, according to the findings, whose members include the British Hospitality Association, ABTA and regional tourist boards. While £1 billion of that was spent before June 23, the total additional staycation income for the whole year is expected to be £1.4 billion.

BHA calls for 'Seaside Tsar'
The falling pound since the Brexit vote has made holidays more expensive for Britons going abroad and cheaper for foreign tourists coming here – giving Britain’s tourism a double boost. It all means the industry is set for a record-breaking year, and factors believed to be adding to the boom include the recent good weather, low interest rates and fears of terrorism overseas.

The Tourism Alliance estimated that spending by Britons on UK holidays has been up by 17 per cent on 2015 so far this year. Alliance director Kurt Janson told the Mail the additional £2.4 billion has the potential to create around 40,000 new jobs in tourism and hospitality.

Top photo (Cary Arms): Patrick Goff

UK hotel investment hits £2 billion in H1 2017

ISHC: The impact of Brexit on tourism industry

949 541 Daniel Fountain

The International Society of Hospitality Consultants (ISHC) is the leading source of global hospitality expertise and counsel, represented by some two hundred of the industry’s most respected professionals from across six continents.

ISHC also functions as a key industry figure, providing a resource for expert opinion on timely and topical matters facing the hospitality industry. With the vote for Brexit now a reality, ISHC have put together a panel of experts to give their opinions on how Brexit will affect the hospitality and tourism industry.

Brexit Viewpoint from Ireland – by Weldon Mather Founder & Director of WM Consultancy Ltd and ISHC Member

The Brexit result stunned most of the European business community, and has had some immediate consequences. While sterling has weakened, inbound visitor arrivals to the UK should increase and while London’s performance has been positive up to April, year-to-date May RevPAR was down 3.0% to £99.88 (US$146.63), as a result of a 2.7% decline in occupancy. Regional UK saw RevPAR increase by 2.2% to £46.87 (US$68.80). Britons may be less inclined to travel overseas however initial indicators have not shown any decline in the pace of overseas bookings. However, the outbound tourists to the Republic of Ireland (in particular from Northern Ireland to the Republic of Ireland which is divided by a 300 mile land border) may be threatened by weaker sterling and potential border restrictions.

Dublin - effect of Brexit
No other country will be affected more that the Republic of Ireland as a result of Brexit, which accounts for more than 50% of all exports to the UK. Over 43% of inbound visitor arrivals to the Republic emanate from the UK and it is estimated that the Republic’s GDP could be impacted by up to 2% when, and if the UK separates from the UK. On the positive side, as the only English speaking and Euro denominated country in the EU, Ireland stands to gain greater FDI as a beachhead into the EU that may see City of London financial services relocate to Dublin, attracted by a more benign 12.5% corporation tax.

Short Term and Long Term Consequencesby Herbert Mascha, Managing Partner of MRP Hotels and ISHC Member

In the short term devaluation of the BPD makes the UK more attractive to tourists and shoppers, especially from US. The devaluation of the EURO against US$ makes EU destinations more attractive to tourists from outside EU. Tourists from UK could be less in destinations like Spain, Greece depending if people cancel their trips because they are facing reduction of value of BPD or reductions of their incomes in the near future.

For me most importantly, investments into new hotel developments or renovations may be put on hold because of uncertainty; we still have a lot of projects on hold because of the latest crises. The long term effects really depend on how the EU and UK agree on their future relationship. If Brexodus of agencies, banks and companies happens, this could cause a shift in business travel to other destinations as well as investment in hotel infrastructure in the new destinations.

Long Term Implications
By Aris Ikkos Research Director INSETE and ISHC Member

Considering long term implications, one has to think what will be the impact of Brexit on the EU (and the world at large), not just Britain. Should the EU dissolve (fully or partially) by similar –exit referendums in other countries as well, we will be living in a completely different world and it is anybody’s guess what it will look like. My guess is that it will be much more uncertain and much more autocratic. In this sense the impact of Brexit may be more important outside Britain than inside the country.

Immediate Effects – by Christophe de Bruyn Director of TOURISM & LEISURE Indra Business Consulting and ISHC Member

Immediate effects are and will increasingly be cancellations of booked but unpaid holidays by UK citizens and a lower volume of last minute bookings from UK citizens.
In the midterm until Brexit procedures are clear and currency stabilise we could see a reduction of UK trips abroad and lower spending, which should lead tourism destinations, hotels and resorts to look for substitute clients to cover UK clients’ reduction. There was a similar situation last year with Russian tourists and several years ago when Germany went through a minor internal economic crisis of minor growth.

Greece - impact of Brexit
Tourism from the UK to Greece
– by Aris Ikkos ISHC Research Director of INSETE and ISHC Member

We did some analysis for inbound tourism from the UK to Greece and the euro/pound exchange plays a crucial role, while the level of UK GDP measured in pounds is less important. Our analysis has shown that the average spend, in UKP terms, is remarkably stable. If you add to this the uncertainty surrounding the British economy at the moment and the fact that many Britons book their holidays at a maximum 2 months before departure, we expect a significant negative impact this year.