There were almost a billion tourists in 2010 (940 million). Where did they go? This infographic shows what it would look like if every tourist took the same plane, seated by destination.
If you haven’t memorized every country’s flag, please hover over the section for the country name and number of international arrivals.
Top 10 Tourist Destinations
France Is #1. Unless It’s China
The number one tourist destination is technically France. Those 76.8 million arrivals would fill 41 metaphorical seats. Behind that is America, China and Spain. However, if you include Hong Kong and Macau (Chinese territories), China jumps from number 3 to number one (87.68 million arrivals and 47 seats).
Europe Is Still Hot
As you can see, the front rows are full of European arrivals – France, Spain, Italy, Germany, etc. Europe still accounts for about 50% of tourist arrivals, followed by Asia Pacific with 12.7%.
India Is Fail
What’s striking to me is that India is punching nowhere near its weight – it only has three seats for 5.58 million arrivals – despite being the seventh largest landmass in the world (and awesome) gets less tourists than Singapore (9.16 M). Or Syria (8.55 M), for that matter.
Australia gets a similar amount of tourists (5.89 M), but they earn $30.1 billion in tourism receipts. India earns less than $15 million. I mention India because it was Kanti Bajpal’s article on this subject that got me looking at the data in the first place.
Sri Lanka, of course, is not really on the map (654,000 arrivals), despite having the highest growth rate in the world at 46.1%.
The Google Doc with tables: http://goo.gl/EQxKA
The UNWTO (UN World Tourism Organization) data: http://goo.gl/3eM70 (PDF).
You can find bigger versions of this infographic on Flickr