Tourism

‘Trump slump’ sees USA dip behind Spain in tourism

Daisy Doctor

If you haven’t already heard, Trump’s presidency is making ripple effects throughout the world, and when we say ripple we say huge, inescapable tsunami waves.

The latest to be affected by Trump? His own country.

According to the latest figures from the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), Spain is “expected” to usurp the USA’s position as the second most travelled to country by tourists.

France still remains in number one position.

While the UNWTO is not scheduled to release a full 2017 drill down until later this year, the most recent report speculates a tumble in the USA’s popularity has coincidently happened during Trump’s reign.

See also: The ‘Trump slump’ is alive and kicking

As per the figures, Spain’s popularity has been steadily increasing, with 82.2 million international tourists visiting Spain in 2017, compared to the 75.3 million in 2016.

This is compared to 72.9 million visitors to the US, down from 75.9 million.

It is worth noting here that Spain suffered a devastating year in 2017, as terrorism took the lives of dozens of people as well as the fraught situation in Catalonia.

And yet, Spain prevailed.

Sadly, with Trump as the president, the USA did not.

2017 was a strong year for tourism more generally, with international tourism arrivals growing by 7 per cent worldwide.

Southern and Meditteranean Europe, in particular, saw surges in tourism, as numbers grew by 13 per cent year on year.

UNWTO head of tourism trends John Kester said, “We do see that demand for European destinations has been very strong. We also see important recovery in France.”

“International travel continues to grow strongly, consolidating the tourism sector as a key driver in economic development,” said UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili.

“As the third export sector in the world, tourism is essential for job creation and the prosperity of communities around the world.

“Yet as we continue to grow we must work closer together to ensure this growth benefits every member of every host community, and is in line with the Sustainable Development Goals.”



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