world tourism (foto pixabay)

world tourism (foto pixabay)

By Frank Martin

World tourism continues its recovery despite some persistent universal economic tensions and their aftermath that cast doubts on the last quarter of the current year.

The most recent World Barometer of the World Tourism Organization indicated that 700 million tourists traveled the planet between last January and September.

The figure is more than double (+133%) in comparison with that registered in the same period in 2021 and it is excellent news.

The result indicates to analysts that the global recovery of the leisure industry is jumping over the stumbling blocks and thus leaving behind the tense crisis it suffered in 2020 and 2021.

Industry experts predict that global tourism is on track to achieve a 65% recovery from pre-pandemic levels in 2019, the UNWTO report stressed.

The restoration not only continues, but has expanded rapidly in the period studied, which is another great news.

Previous information reflected that in January of this year monthly arrivals were 64% below 2019 levels.

It was then estimated in real numbers that during the third quarter of 2022, 340 million international arrivals were registered, almost 50% of the total for nine months, giving a decisive boost to the sector.

The international tourism authorities considered that these excellent results in the midst of doubts and adverse events, were driven by a strong accumulated demand, better levels of market confidence and the lifting of restrictions in an increasing number of destinations.

The Americas, including of course the Caribbean, maintained a 106% recovery in the first nine months of 2022, which is described as “strong growth compared to 2021,” the experts said.

The Caribbean and Central America had an increase of 82% in the period studied, always compared to the similar of 2021 and northern Europe 81%.

The old continent was the part of the world with a stronger recovery in the period. The continent received 477 million international arrivals in January-September 2022 (68% of the world total), reaching 81% of pre-pandemic levels.

Western Europe recorded 88% and Southern Mediterranean Europe 86% the fastest recoveries compared to 2019 levels.

In Asia and the Pacific, a +230% advance occurred as arrivals tripled in the first nine months of 2022. This occurred despite the fact that China, the world’s great supplier of tourists, remains closed.

With such a recovery in arrivals another occurred: that of income from destinations.

In the first 7 to 9 months of this year, Serbia, Romania, Turkey, Latvia, Portugal, Pakistan, Mexico, Morocco and France were highly favored in terms of revenue.

Another indicator analyzed by specialists were the expenses made by tourism in France, Germany, Belgium, Italy, the United States, Qatar, India and Saudi Arabia.

The success of the recovery allowed many destinations to flourish, the analyzes indicated.

Strong demand for air travel and hotel accommodation rose. Air seat capacity on international routes in January-August reached 62% of 2019 levels, with Europe (78%) and the Americas (76%).

For the near future of world tourism, however, there is caution.

The villain in this case is the state of the world economy with persistently high inflation and rising gasoline and energy prices in general that the war in Europe could worsen.