Tourism is travel for recreational, leisure or business purposes. The World Tourism Organization defines tourists as people who "travel to and stay in places outside their usual environment for more than twenty-four (24) hours and not more than one consecutive year for leisure, business and other purposes not related to the exercise of an activity remunerated from within the place visited". Tourism has become a popular global leisure activity. In 2007, there were over 903 million international tourist arrivals, with a growth of 6.6% as compared to 2006. International tourist receipts were USD 856 billion in 2007.
Despite the recent global recession, international tourist arrivals during the first four months of 2008 followed a similar growth trend than the same period in 2007.However, as a result of the economic crisis of 2008, international travel demand suffered a strong slowdown beginning in June 2008, with growth in international tourism arrivals worldwide falling to 2% during the boreal summer months, while growth from January to April 2008 had reached an average 5.7% compared to its 2007 level. Growth from 2006 to 2007 was only 3.7%, as total international tourism arrivals from January to August were 641 million tourists, up from 618 million in the same period in 2007.
Tourism is vital for many countries, such as the U.A.E,
Hunziker and Krapf, in 1941, defined tourism as people who travel "the sum of the phenomena and relationships arising from the travel and stay of non-residents, insofar as they do not lead to permanent residence and are not connected with any earning activity." In 1976, the Tourism Society of England's definition was: "Tourism is the temporary, short-term movement of people to destination outside the places where they normally live and work and their activities during the stay at each destination. It includes movements for all purposes." In 1981, the International Association of Scientific Experts in Tourism defined tourism in terms of particular activities selected by choice and undertaken outside the home.
The United Nations classified three forms of tourism in 1994, in its "Recommendations on Tourism Statistics: Domestic tourism", which involves residents of the given country traveling only within this country; Inbound tourism, involving non-residents traveling in the given country; and Outbound tourism, involving residents traveling in another country. The UN also derived different categories of tourism by combining the three basic forms of tourism: Internal tourism, which comprises domestic tourism and inbound tourism; National tourism, which comprises domestic tourism and outbound tourism; and International tourism, which consists of inbound tourism and outbound tourism. Intrabound tourism is a term coined by the Korea Tourism Organization and widely accepted in
Recently, the tourism industry has shifted from the promotion of inbound tourism to the promotion of intrabound tourism, because many countries are experiencing tough competition for inbound tourists. Some national policymakers have shifted their priority to the promotion of intrabound tourism to contribute to the local economy. Examples of such campaigns include: "See America" in Singapore" in Singapore; "100% Pure New Zealand" in New Zealand; "Amazing Thailand" in Thailand; "Incredible India" in India; and "The Hidden Charm" in Vietnam.
World tourism statistics and rankings
Most visited countries
The World Tourism Organization reports the following ten countries as the most visited in 2007 by number of international travelers. When compared to 2006,
Rank Country UNWTO
1 France Europe 81.9 million 79.1 million
2 Spain Europe 59.2 million 58.5 million
3 United States North America 56.0 million 51.1 million
4 China Asia 54.7 million 49.6 million
5 Italy Europe 43.7 million 41.1 million
6 United Kingdom Europe 30.7 million 30.7 million
7 Germany Europe 24.4 million 23.6 million
8 Ukraine Europe 23.1 million 18.9 million
9 Turkey Europe 22.2 million 18.9 million
10 Mexico North America 21.4 million 21.4 million
International tourism receipts
International tourist receipts were USD 96.7 billion in 2007, up from USD 85.7 billion in 2006. When the export value of international passenger travel receipts is accounted for, total receipts in 2007 reached a record of USD 1.02 trillion or 3 billion a day.The World Tourism Organization reports the following countries as the top ten tourism earners for the year 2007. It is noticeable that most of them are on the European continent, but the
Rank Country UNWTO
1 United States
2 Spain Europe $57.8 billion $51.1 billion
3 France Europe $54.2 billion $46.3 billion
4 Italy Europe $42.7 billion $38.1 billion
5 China Asia $41.9 billion $33,9 billion
6 United Kingdom Europe $37.6 billion $33.7 billion
7 Germany Europe $36.0 billion $32.8 billion
8 Australia Oceania $22.2 billion $17.8 billion
9 Austria Europe $18.9 billion $16.6 billion
10 Turkey Europe $18.5 billion $16.9 billion
International tourism top spenders
The World Tourism Organization reports the following countries as the top ten biggest spenders on international tourism for the year 2007. For the fifth year in a row, German tourists continue as the top spenders. A study by Dresdner Bank forecasts that for 2008, Germans and Europeans, in general, will continue to be the top spenders, because of the strength of the Euro against the
Rank Country UNWTO
1 Germany Europe $82.9 billion $73.9 billion
2 United States
3 United Kingdom Europe $72.3 billion $63.1 billion
4 France Europe $36.7 billion $31.2 billion
5 China Asia $29.8 billion $24.3 billion
6 Italy Europe $27.3 billion $23.1 billion
7 Japan Asia $26.5 billion $26.9 billion
8 Canada North America $24.8 billion $20.5 billion
9 Russia Europe $22.3 billion $18.2 billion
10 South Korea Asia $20.9 billion $18.9 billion
Most visited attractions
Forbes Traveller released a ranking of the world's 50 most visited tourist attractions in 2007, including both international and domestic tourists.The following are the Top 10 attractions, followed by some other famous sites included within the list of the 50 most visited: It is noticeable that six out of the top ten are in
Most visited attractions by domestic and international tourists in 2007
Top 10 ranking tourist attractions
ranking Tourist attraction Location Country Number of
1 Times Square
2 National Mall and Memorial Parks
7 Fisherman's Wharf & Golden Gate
9 Notre Dame de Paris Paris
Other selected famous destinations
11 Great Wall of China Badaling
24 Hong Kong Disneyland Hong Kong
28 Universal Studios
31 Grand Canyon
36 Statue of
38 Sydney Opera House
39 The Colosseum
50 Taj Mahal
Most visited cities
Euromonitor released a ranking of the world's 150 most visited cities by international tourists in 2007. The following are the leading 15 cities, according to Euromonitor's ranking:
Most visited cities by international tourists in 2007
Top 15 ranking cities
Ranking City Country Number of
(millions) Ranking City Country Number of
(millions) Ranking City Country Number of
2 Hong Kong
However, other sources report
Kinkaku-ji, the Golden Pavilion temple in
The Matterhorn, near Zermatt in the Swiss Alps,
The Great Bath at the Roman Baths in
Ski jumping hill in
Wealthy people have always traveled to distant parts of the world, to see great buildings, works of art, learn new languages, experience new cultures and to taste different cuisines. Long ago, at the time of the
Leisure travel was associated with the Industrial Revolution in the
The British origin of this new industry is reflected in many place names. In Nice, France, one of the first and best-established holiday resorts on the French Riviera, the long esplanade along the seafront is known to this day as the Promenade des Anglais; in many other historic resorts in continental Europe, old, well-established palace hotels have names like the Hotel Bristol, the Hotel Carlton or the Hotel Majestic – reflecting the dominance of English customers.
Many leisure-oriented tourists travel to the tropics, both in the summer and winter. Places often visited are:
Major ski resorts are located in the various European countries (e.g. Austria, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, Norway, Poland, Slovakia, Spain, Switzerland), Canada, the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Korea, Chile and Argentina.
Mass tourism could only have developed with the improvements in technology, allowing the transport of large numbers of people in a short space of time to places of leisure interest, so that greater numbers of people began to enjoy the benefits of leisure time.
In continental Europe, early resorts included:
See also: List of adjectival tourisms
Adjectival tourism refers to the numerous niche or specialty travel forms of tourism that have emerged over the years, each with its own adjective. Many of these have come into common use by the tourism industry and academics. Others are emerging concepts that may or may not gain popular usage. Examples of the more common niche tourism markets include:
Red Square in
Iguazu Falls on the Argentina-Brazil border.
There has been an upmarket trend in the tourism over the last few decades, especially in
The developments in technology and transport infrastructure, such as jumbo jets, low-cost airlines and more accessible airports have made many types of tourism more affordable. WHO estimates that up to 500,000 people are on planes at any time.There have also been changes in lifestyle, such as retiree-age people who sustain year round tourism. This is facilitated by internet sales of tourism products. Some sites have now started to offer dynamic packaging, in which an inclusive price is quoted for a tailor-made package requested by the customer upon impulse.
There have been a few setbacks in tourism, such as the September 11 attacks and terrorist threats to tourist destinations, such as in
The terms tourism and travel are sometimes used interchangeably. In this context, travel has a similar definition to tourism, but implies a more purposeful journey. The terms tourism and tourist are sometimes used pejoratively, to imply a shallow interest in the cultures or locations visited by tourists.
"Sustainable tourism is envisaged as leading to management of all resources in such a way that economic, social and aesthetic needs can be fulfilled while maintaining cultural integrity, essential ecological processes, biological diversity and life support systems." (World Tourism Organization)
Sustainable development implies "meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs" (World Commission on Environment and Development, 1987)
When there is a significant price difference between countries for a given medical procedure, particularly in Southeast Asia, India, Eastern Europe and where there are different regulatory regimes, in relation to particular medical procedures (e.g. dentistry), travelling to take advantage of the price or regulatory differences is often referred to as "medical tourism".
Educational tourism developed, because of the growing popularity of teaching and learning of knowledge and the enhancing of technical competency outside of the classroom environment. In educational tourism, the main focus of the tour or leisure activity includes visiting another country to learn about the culture, such as in Student Exchange Programs and Study Tours, or to work and apply skills learned inside the classroom in a different environment, such as in the International Practicum Training Program.
Creative tourism has existed as a form of cultural tourism, since the early beginnings of tourism itself. Its European roots date back to the time of the Grand Tour, which saw the sons of aristocratic families traveling for the purpose of mostly interactive, educational experiences. More recently, creative tourism has been given its own name by Crispin Raymond and Greg Richards, who as members of the Association for Tourism and Leisure Education (ATLAS), have directed a number of projects for the European Commission, including cultural and crafts tourism, known as sustainable tourism. They have defined "creative tourism" as tourism related to the active participation of travelers in the culture of the host community, through interactive workshops and informal learning experiences.
Meanwhile, the concept of creative tourism has been picked up by high-profile organizations such as UNESCO, who through the Creative Cities Network, have endorsed creative tourism as an engaged, authentic experience that promotes an active understanding of the specific cultural features of a place.
More recently, creative tourism has gained popularity as a form of cultural tourism, drawing on active participation by travelers in the culture of the host communities they visit. Several countries offer examples of this type of tourism development, including the
One emerging area of special interest tourism has been identified by Lennon and Foley (2000) as "dark" tourism. This type of tourism involves visits to "dark" sites, such as battlegrounds, scenes of horrific crimes or acts of genocide, for example: concentration camps. Dark tourism poses severe ethical and moral dilemmas: should these sites be available for visitation and, if so, what should the nature of the publicity involved be. Dark tourism remains a small niche market, driven by varied motivations, such as mourning, remembrance, macabre curiosity or even entertainment. Its early origins are rooted in fairgrounds and medieval fairs.
International tourism receipts in 2005
The Hagia Sophia – originally a church, later a mosque, now a museum in
The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) forecasts that international tourism will continue growing at the average annual rate of 4 %. By 2020 Europe will remain the most popular destination, but its share will drop from 60% in 1995 to 46%. Long-haul will grow slightly faster than intraregional travel and by 2020 its share will increase from 18% in 1995 to 24%.
With the advent of e-commerce, tourism products have become one of the most traded items on the internet. Tourism products and services have been made available through intermediaries, although tourism providers (hotels, airlines, etc.) can sell their services directly. This has put pressure on intermediaries from both on-line and traditional shops.
It has been suggested there is a strong correlation between Tourism expenditure per capita and the degree to which countries play in the global context. Not only as a result of the important economic contribution of the tourism industry, but also as an indicator of the degree of confidence with which global citizens leverage the resources of the globe for the benefit of their local economies. This is why any projections of growth in tourism may serve as an indication of the relative influence that each country will exercise in the future.
Space tourism is expected to "take off" in the first quarter of the 21st century, although compared with traditional destinations the number of tourists in orbit will remain low until technologies such as a space elevator make space travel cheap.
Technological improvement is likely to make possible air-ship hotels, based either on solar-powered airplanes or large dirigibles. Underwater hotels, such as Hydropolis, expected to open in
As a result of the economic crisis of 2008, international arrivals suffered a strong slowdown beginning in June 2008. Growth from 2007 to 2008 was only 3.7% during the first eight months of 2008. The Asian and Pacific markets were affected and Europe stagnated during the boreal summer months, while the
Tourism is the issue that nearly every city faces. It is worldwide and a threat to beaches, famous landmarks,holy areas and also resorts. Attracting a high volume of tourists can have negative impacts, such as the impact of 33 million tourists a year on the city of