Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Destination Reports

Riyadh rises in travel popularity
December 2016 226

If the Mastercard Global Destinations Cities Index 2016 is anything to go by, then Riyadh has been the most impressive city on that list. The report, released recently, gives two thumbs up to the capital of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Reinforcing its reputation as a rising business and tourism hub, Riyadh has been named the sixth fastest growing travel destination in the world, further, the Saudi Arabian capital is also ranked the second most popular destination in Middle East and Africa.

A strong compounded annual growth rate of 16.45 per cent – gives Riyadh the bragging rights as one of four cities from Middle East and Africa (MEA) to find a place among the list of top 20 fastest growing destinations with at least one million overnight visitors in 2016, along with Abu Dhabi (#3) and Dubai (#20).

Bangkok topped this year’s list of the world’s most popular travel destinations, pushing London to second spot, with Paris, Dubai and New York rounding off the top five.

Riyadh’s top five feeder cities are all in the Middle East, with visitors coming via Dubai being the fastest growing segment at 39.2 per cent between 2015 and 2016. In terms of country of origin, Kuwaiti residents account for 13% of international visitors, followed by Jordan at 10 per cent, Egypt at 9 per cent, and Pakistan and UAE both at 8 per cent.


Fastest growing destination cities

The difference between the global Top 10 and the fastest growing Top 10 destination cities suggests that Asia/Pacific and the Middle East and Africa have become increasingly important to the global economic landscape. Many cities measured on the Mastercard Global Destinations Cities Index 2016 have increasing growth trajectories, indicating the growing interest in both visiting and living in cities.

Cities that made the Top 6 fastest growing destinations include:

• Osaka – 24.5 per cent
• Chengdu – 20.14 per cent
• Abu Dhabi – 19.81 per cent
• Colombo – 19.57 per cent
• Tokyo – 18.48 per cent
• Riyadh – 16.45 per cent

Forecasted overnight visitors to the Top 10 cities include:

• Bangkok – 21.47 million
• London – 19.88 million
• Paris – 18.03 million visitors
• Dubai – 15.27 million visitors
• New York – 12.75 million visitors
• Singapore – 12.11 million visitors
• Kuala Lumpur – 12.02 million visitors
• Istanbul – 11.95 million visitors
• Tokyo – 11.70 million visitors
• Seoul – 10.20 million visitors

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