Demographics, economics, and travel are all inextricably linked. Growing populations, especially in the developing world, mean enormous potential for new outbound travelers. This potential energy is converted to the kinetic movement of people when populations experience economic development that allows them to afford international travel.
Burgeoning commercial ties lead to growth of business travel. And that same economic development also leads to rising incomes, which power leisure travel. These new tourists often have a desire to visit both classic vacation sites — like the Eiffel Tower— as well as short-haul destinations, which is supercharging inbound arrivals to destinations across Asia.
This report aims to present a picture of the state of global travel today and to forecast its development over the next decade. We attempt to do this by first forecasting the underlying drivers of travel: demographics and the broad economy. We begin this report by reviewing the current distribution of, and 10-year forecasts for, both global population and gross domestic product (GDP).
From there, we examine the current breakdown of international travel departures and then develop estimates for 2024 and 2029. Our forecasts cover outbound travel for five major regions as well as many subregions and individual countries.
We hope that this report and its forecasts can serve as a roadmap for strategic planners at hotels, airlines, travel agents, and destination marketing organizations who seek to understand the sources of their future customers.