What does a country’s expenditure on international tourism or travel abroad indicate? Is it their citizens’ disposable wealth; a love of adventure; a need to leave one’s daily routine, or perhaps just an individual’s decision to get away? People travel alone, with friends, in couples and in families. There are all-inclusive tours for those who are less adventurous or who want more bang for their buck, allowing tourists to see as much as possible in the way of popular sights - and sites! - within a short period, without having to think about a thing along the way like who will drive, what the route is, or where to stop and eat.
Some can afford to travel in style, staying at five-star hotels wherever they go and eating at only the best restaurants. Others backpack their way through whole continents and more, staying at hostels and other cheap establishments. There are all-inclusive beach resorts, out-of-the-way villages where one can rent a villa, home-exchange websites and all sorts of other options. Some prefer a relaxing beach trip, some an historic city. Some tourists want something more modern, perhaps, with a focus on food and shopping. Whatever your taste, there's somewhere in the world for every intrepid voyager.
Some nations in particular seem to enjoy venturing off their native soil for pastures new much more often than most nations. The World Bank collects statistics on such things; their latest figures are from 2012, and illustrate that people from all over love to hop on planes, buses, trains - whatever it takes to get to another country for a vacation. One of the most interesting facts to take note of is that the amount a country spends is not necessarily a reflection of how many people in that country travel, as figures include overall spending for the nation as well as per capita averages. Which countries around the world spend the most overall on their international escapades? Figures are quoted in U.S. dollars.
10 Italy: $26.4 billion
9 Australia: $27.6 billion
8 Japan:$27.9 billion
7 Canada: $35.1 billion
6 France: $37.2 billion
5 Russia: $42.8 billion
4 United Kingdom: $52.3 billion
3 United States: $83.5 billion
2 Germany: $83.8 billion
1 China: $102 billion
China’s international tourism expenditure rose by over 37% between 2012 and 2013, a huge figure, illustrating the country’s recognition of the importance of exposure to different cultures and learning. This populous nation now controls almost 10% of the market share for the entire world when it comes to tourism-related travel, but because of the sheer number of people in the country, an average of only $75 U.S. is spent per capita. Where do Chinese travelers most like to go? Generally they choose destinations close by, with the U.S. ranking seventh after Hong Kong, Macau, South Korea, Thailand, Taiwan and Singapore.
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