The travel and tourism industry is an entity that many graduates want to be a part of, opening the doors to experiences many would easily envy. Cabin crew, tour guides, hoteliers, instructors; the number of opportunities that exist within the industry are only constrained by the imagination – if you’ve got an amazing experience to offer travellers, or a service that will improve their holidays, it can be done.
The tourism industry ebbs and flows like any other industry though, with hotspots and shrinkages occurring across the world constantly – which are the hottest, most popular places that tourists are flocking to?
Australia and New Zealand are experiencing a boom in tourist activity as the incomes of Southeast Asian and East Asian individuals grow. This extra cash, as well as the growth in low-cost airlines across the region, is allowing travellers who would have otherwise visited local or regional hotspots – Macau and Hong Kong in the case of Chinese tourists – to go further afield. New Zealand and Australia have been obvious beneficiaries of this tourism boom.
According to Credit Lyonnais Securities Asia (CLSA), the number of Chinese visitors to the continent will grow by 22% every year, between 2014 and 2020, a rise on the 19% annual rises seen between 2009 and 2014. This is boosting hotel values, room rates and occupancy levels in tandem – excellent news for the Australian tourist industry.
In New Zealand, the dramatic scenery, winter sun and huge amount of activities are causing the country’s tourist industry to skyrocket. This year international arrivals broke records, rising to 3.09 million, and the size of the industry grew to a massive NZ$13.5 billion in 2015.
Thanks to an end of conflict and political instability, improved prosperity and a boost to national infrastructure, South American countries are enjoying a large increase in tourist numbers. The biggest winner of the countries is Paraguay, which enjoyed stratospheric 97% boost in growth in 2015, mainly thanks to its rich heritage and bountiful natural treasures.
Chile (20.4%) and Colombia (17.2%) also enjoyed increasing visitor numbers thanks to increased numbers of long-haul tourists, and a greatly improved reputation internationally, respectively.
In 2010, the Japanese tourism industry welcomed 8.6m visitors. By 2015 this had risen by 47.5% to 20m visitors. Why did this growth happen? As well as there being an increase in interest regarding Japanese culture on a global level, relaxed visa rules and an increase in the number of duty-free products are also driving the boom, all these being helped along by a weak currency – a big draw in the traditionally-expensive nation.
A hotspot for European travellers wanting to cut costs and enjoy a less-developed travel experience, Eastern European destinations are proving truly popular. Bosnia and Herzegovina enjoyed growth of 28.2%, Hungary some 19.1%, Romania 16.9%, and Macedonia a bountiful 13.9% in 2015.
As travellers look for more rural experiences such as hiking and skiing, the region’s cities receive more investment, and the looming spectre of the wars of the 1990s recedes, the beautiful climate and rich cultures of these destinations are being lapped up by travellers.
According to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), the travel and tourism industry provides some 277 million jobs worldwide. If you want to learn more about becoming part of this blossoming industry, take a look at GSM London’