Everyone talks about how expensive travel is, so people take a lot of time to save for their vacations. Theyâ€™ll pinch pennies until theyâ€™ve got enough in their bank accounts to go on a comfortable trip.
Some take the opposite tack and put the entire junket on their credit cards to build up points and reap the travel benefits. It turns out that these are fairly common practices around the world.
In fact, the travel industry is a multi-trillion-dollar, worldwide industry that keeps growing, despite the growing expense of travel.
Travel Statistics Worldwide
Money pours into the travel industry from all over the globe. Itâ€™s turned into a $7.6 trillion industry, according to Statista.
The companyâ€™s research also shows there are more than 1.2 billion international tourist arrivals worldwide each year, although more than half of those tourists go to Europe. The report also reveals which areas reap the most in tourist spending.
The primary statistics are as follows:
- Global international tourism revenue: $126 billion
- Global hotel industry total retail value: $427.69 billion
- Percentage of travel bookings made from the U.S.: 39%
- Worldwide travel bookings revenue: $498 billion
- North American cruise industry volume: $21.21 billion
- Revenue of the worldwide cruise industry: $39.6 billion
These numbers show that the travel economy is booming. It seems to have become an integral part of North American culture, and quite a lot of the revenue goes to cruises and hotels.
More research from an infographic posted on Cargo Collective shows that tourism in 2012 had increased more than 40 times since 1950 when a mere 25 million people traveled across international borders. Whatâ€™s more, tourism showed a particular spike between 2011 and 2012, when it rose 53 percent.
Now we have more than one billion tourists flying around the world. As mentioned earlier, Europe receives the largest number of global tourists, but it doesnâ€™t receive the most revenue from tourism.
The United States tops the charts on that score with more than $116 billion a year in tourist income. The biggest spenders come from Germany at $84 billion a year, with U.S. citizens close behind at $79 billion a year in global tourism spending.
People say the biggest reason they travel is for leisure, recreation, and the holidays (51 percent). An additional 27 percent say they travel around the world to visit family and friends, and 15 percent go for business and professional reasons. These reasons will always be a priority for people, which strongly suggests we can expect the continued growth of travel.
Tourism Makes the World Go Round
Though many complain about the tourists that visit their region, a huge deficit in the global and local economies would occur without it. According to the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), tourism constitutes a substantial 10 percent of global GDP and is the source of one in every 11 jobs.
The U.S. alone spends $1.5 trillion in exports to other countries through tourism, and thatâ€™s vital for the world economy since it makes up 7 percent of the worldâ€™s product exports and 30 percent of services exports.
Despite the downsides of annoying tourists and expensive travel, this is still one of the most significant industries in the world. Travel maintains jobs and keeps people in business. Without it, the world would have a huge hole to fill in terms of both revenue generation and entertainment.