Foreign arrivals into Asia-Pacific increased three per cent to 597 million in 2016, led by Asia with almost 436 million international arrivals (70 per cent), followed by the Americas with close to 147 million arrivals (34 per cent) and the Pacific with 24.5 million international arrivals (12 per cent), according to PATA's Annual Travel Monitor 2017 Early Edition.
Intra-regional travel flows were extremely strong for Asia and the Americas, the report stated, with 94 per cent and 78 per cent of their inbound volumes respectively arising from within the same region.
South Korea among 17 destinations that saw double digit growth; Bukchon Hanok Village, Seoul pictured
Seventeen of the 47 destinations surveyed in the study saw double-digit growth rates, including Nepal and South Korea which each saw increases of more than 30 per cent, and over 20 per cent for Mongolia, Japan and Vietnam.
Growth was once again not uniform across Asia-Pacific with seven destinations reporting contractions. However, despite significant challenges, Turkey’s tourism sector saw nearly 18 million additional arrivals added to its foreign inbound count year-on-year.
Origin markets in North-east Asia were the largest generators of absolute volumes, led by China and Hong Kong which generated 108.5 million and 93.7 million arrivals respectively, followed by Macau (24.4 million arrivals), South Korea (23.2 million), Japan (20.3 million) and Taiwan (19.8 million).
Singapore was the only South-east Asian origin market within the top 10 feeder markets, generating close to 19.9 million visitors.
Among the origin sub-regions, North-east Asia topped that list with an additional eight million arrivals within its own sub-region between 2015 and 2016, and 4.4 million additional arrivals into South-east Asia.
The reverse was also true with South-east Asia generating 2.2 million and 1.8 million additional foreign arrivals into North-east Asia and South-east Asia itself respectively.