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The Fastest Growing Tourism Destination in 2024

We recently compiled a list of 20 Fastest Growing Tourism Destinations in 2024 and in this article, we will talk about the Fastest Growing Tourism Destination in 2024.

Since the alleviation of travel restrictions around the world, international tourism has rebounded at a rate of knots. In 2023, international tourist arrivals around the world were recorded at 88% of pre-pandemic levels, and UNWTO anticipates 2024 to be the year that these figures surpass pre-pandemic levels. In the first quarter of 2024, 285 million tourists traveled internationally. This was 97% of international tourist arrivals recorded in the same period. Interestingly, some countries around the globe have been much more successful in their efforts to rejuvenate tourism than others.

Tourism Growth by Region

Data shows that recovery in tourism has not been uniform across the globe. In fact, the Middle East became the first region to surpass pre-pandemic volumes in 2023. The region hosted 87.1 million international tourists last year, which was 22% higher than 2019. Tourism volumes in the Middle East have been even more impressive during Q1 2024, with 36% more international tourists visiting in comparison to Q1 2019.

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In contrast, the Asia and Pacific region has been lagging behind in the effort to rebuild its tourism industry. In 2023, international tourist arrivals in the region were recorded at just 65% of pre-pandemic volumes. In comparison, Europe, the Americas, and Africa recovered to at least 90% of tourist volumes recorded in 2019. Despite its sluggish recovery, tourism in Asia has managed to show some signs of progress during the last quarter.

In Q1 2024, the region hosted 82% of international tourists in comparison to Q1 2019. Tourism in the region has also been aided by the resurgence of tourism in China. China was the first country to experience the devastating impact of COVID-19, causing it to implement travel restrictions as early as January 2020. Now, it has finally relaxed much of the travel restrictions that continued to be implemented post-lock down. The country has also introduced many visa-free entry policies for several EU nations and countries such as Malaysia and Thailand. Our article on the Most Underrated Cities in Africa to Visit in 2024 how several nations in Africa have introduced similar waivers on visas to capitalize on the growing demand for tourism. However, data from Expedia Group Inc (NASDAQ: EXPE) shows that factors such as sustainability, wellness, and enrichment are the real driving factors behind tourism in 2024. 

Travel Trends in 2024

According to Expedia Group Inc (NASDAQ: EXPE), 70% of tourists are willing to sacrifice convenience to be more sustainable. To capitalize on the demand for sustainable tourism, Expedia Group Inc (NASDAQ: EXPE) joined a sustainable travel coalition led by Travalyst in 2022 and launched a global sustainability strategy in the same year. Similarly, demand for self-care tourism has also increased in the wake of the pandemic, with wellness tourism expected to grow beyond $1 Trillion in revenue in 2024. Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. (NYSE: HLT) reports the number one reason people are traveling in 2024 is to rest and recharge, with many looking to improve their mental and physical wellness while on vacation. Consequently, resorts such as Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. (NYSE: HLT) and Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) have ramped up their offerings in the wellness space.

In 2020, Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. (NYSE: HLT) launched Tempo, a wellness-focused hotel chain that is suited to the demands of its health-conscious vacationers. Similarly, Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR), under its JW Marriott brand, launched a “Stay in the Moment” campaign in the Asia-Pacific market. This campaign provides experiences focusing on personal well-being and enrichment. Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) has placed immense focus on the Asia-Pacific market in recent years, despite tourism in the region failing to rejuvenate since the pandemic. In 2023, Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) celebrated its milestone of reaching 1000 hotels in the region.

Summer 2024 has the potential to be a record-breaking season in terms of tourism for many countries around the world. With its impressive portfolio in the Asia-Pacific region, Marriott could finally reap the rewards of its investments in this market. In Q1 2024, the company’s RevPAR grew by 4% YoY worldwide. However, in the Asia-Pacific region (excluding China) the RevPAR grew by 17%. As a result, CFO Leeny Oberg revealed that the company is raising its full-year adjusted EBITDA and adjusted EPS expectations, drawing confidence from its IMF (incentive management fee) revenues in international regions. It should be noted that the company fell just short of adjusted diluted EPS expectations of $2.17 in Q1 2024, instead posting an adjusted diluted EPS of $2.13. Irrespective, share prices remained relatively consistent after the company reported its quarterly financial results on the 1st of May, ending the month at $231.17 (MAR share price on May 1st was $233.86). The hotel's strategic expansion and strong development pipeline demonstrates its potential for growth in the upcoming quarters.

While we at Insider Monkey recognize the stability of Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) stock and its ability to deliver returns, our conviction lies in the belief that some AI stocks hold greater promise for delivering higher returns and doing so within a shorter timeframe. If you are looking for an AI stock that is more promising than Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) but that trades at less than 5 times its earnings, check out our report about the cheapest AI stock.

The Fastest Growing Tourism Destination in 2024
The Fastest Growing Tourism Destination in 2024

Fastest Growing Tourism Destination in 2024

Methodology

To develop our list of the fastest-growing tourism destinations in 2024, we utilized UNWTO’s data on international tourist arrivals for each country in Q1 2024 and in the full year 2023. We compared these figures to tourist arrivals for corresponding periods in 2019 and calculated which countries had achieved the highest growth in tourist arrivals. We excluded countries that hosted less than 1 million international tourists in 2019 or 2023. Similarly, countries where figures for tourist arrivals were unavailable have also been excluded.

Our Insider Monkey scores were calculated by utilizing growth rates for both full year 2023 and Q1 2024. We then sorted our list in descending order. The top 20 items were chosen as the fastest-growing tourism destinations in 2024.

1. Qatar

Insider Monkey Score: 9.16

Q1 2024 Tourist Volume: 177% greater than Q1 2019

2023 Tourist Volume: 89% greater than 2019

Based on our methodology, the fastest-growing travel destination in the world is Qatar. The country hosted over 4 million international tourists in 2023. Tourism in the country has been significantly boosted by sporting events such as the FIFA World Cup 2022 and Formula One. In the first four months of 2024, Qatar hosted over 2 million international tourists, with the capital city of Doha being one of the most popular tourist destinations in the country. Qatar has also attracted the interest of major cruise lines, with Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (NYSE: RCL), Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. (NYSE: NCLH), and MSC Cruises all offering trips to its shores.

Check out more of the Fastest Growing Tourism Destinations in 2024.

At Insider Monkey, we delve into a variety of topics, ranging from the fastest-growing travel destinations in 2024 to the best AI travel apps; however, our expertise lies in identifying the top-performing stocks. Currently, Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology stands out as one of the most promising fields. If you are looking for an AI stock that is more promising than NVDA but that trades at less than 5 times its earnings, check out our report about the cheapest AI stock.

READ NEXT: 15 Best AI Travel Apps for Vacationing in 2024 and 11 Best Travel-Sized Fragrances For Your Next Vacation.

Disclosure: None. This article is originally published on Insider Monkey.