June 09, 2011
Beijing, 9 June, 2011: Beijing and Shanghai, already leading global and regional destination cities, will see their number of visitors grow significantly in 2011, according to MasterCard Worldwide’s Index of Global Destination Cities.
The MasterCard Worldwide Index of Global Destination Cities ranks 132 selected cities around the world by their total international visitor arrivals, along with their cross-border spending in those cities. The Index offers a different approach to understanding the global economy and the dynamic flow of commerce around the world.
Among the global top 20 destination cities by visitor arrivals, London tops the world’s cities with 20.1 million inbound passengers expected in 2011, ahead of Paris in second place with 18.1 million and Bangkok in third with 11.5 million. Shanghai ranks No. 18 with 5.5 million visitors. Growth rates of visitor arrivals for the top 20 destination cities in 2011 show Shanghai to rank No. 4 at 18.6%. Among the top 10 destination cities in the Asia/Pacific region, Bangkok ranks No.1, while Shanghai and Beijing rank No. 6 and No. 9 respectively.
According to the Index, in 2010 the overall total outbound air passenger departures and outbound expenditure grew by 9.2% and 14.6% year-on-year, respectively. This reflects a recovery in global tourism following the global economic crisis. Of all the top-ranked destination cities reviewed in the report, only three had a decline in visitor arrivals and two show declining visitor expenditures.
Thirteen Chinese cities were included in the Index rankings of the 132 cities. Beijing and Shanghai rank second and third regionally in terms of visitor growth, with growth rates estimated at 20.2% and 18.6% respectively, reflecting their rising prominence as China’s most important destination cities. Shanghai also ranks No. 2 in the region for growth in visitor expenditure with 24.3%, second to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, with 31.0%
The Index shows Hong Kong is still the most dynamic business and travel center in the Greater China region. Hong Kong ranks No. 5 among the global top 20 destination cities by international visitors, Shanghai ranks No. 18 and Taipei ranks No.19. Among the top 20 destination cities by visitor spending, only Hong Kong and Taipei are on the list, with rankings of No. 10 and No. 17 respectively. In terms of growth rates of visitor expenditures for the top 20 destination cities in 2011, Taipei and Hong Kong both have a growth rate of over 20%.
Ling Hai, MasterCard Worldwide’s Division President for Greater China, said: “This kind of growth pattern suggests that destination cities in emerging markets like China will continue to grow in importance and play a much greater role in the global economy. MasterCard understands these travel growth trends and will continue to help build upon the profiles of these cities through programs that will increase the attractiveness of the travel experience into China.”
The Index shows there are eight Asia/Pacific cities ranking among the global top 20 destination cities by visitor arrival and seven cities ranking among the global top 20 destination cities by international visitor spending. In terms of both visitor arrivals and international spending, Bangkok ranks No. 1, illustrating that it has become a mature international destination in Asia/Pacific. Singapore is second to Bangkok by visitor arrivals, followed by Hong Kong. By visitor expenditure, Singapore ranks No.3 and Hong Kong No. 4. Other Asia/Pacific cities ranking in the global top 20 destinations include Shanghai, Taipei, Tokyo, Seoul and Kuala Lumpur.
The MasterCard Worldwide Index of Global Destination Cities is compiled using international flight and flight capacity information purchased from OAG Global, a provider of international aviation data. Flight schedules are also used for calculating flight frequency between pairs of cities. Airlines also publish on a regular basis their historical load factor, and advance flight schedules, which are then used to estimate the actual outbound passenger departures, and for forecasting outbound passenger departures in the coming year. On a country level, the UN Database of “Trade in Service” in the “Travel Component” provides estimates of how much each year residents spend abroad (air fare paid in home country not included). An algorithm is applied to this total outbound expenditure and estimated total number of outbound passengers to derive an estimate of average per outbound passenger’s expenditure overseas.
MasterCard (NYSE: MA), www.mastercard.com, is a technology company in the global payments industry. We operate the world’s fastest payments processing network, connecting consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. MasterCard’s products and solutions make everyday commerce activities – such as shopping, traveling, running a business and managing finances – easier, more secure and more efficient for everyone. Follow us on Twitter @MasterCardNews, join the discussion on the Cashless Conversations Blog and subscribe for the latest news.