Travel & Tourism Development Index 2024: Insight Report

Japan has slipped from top to third in a new report published by the World Economic Forum (WEF) that highlights the promotion of natural and cultural resources and commitment to sustainability and tourism.

The Travel & Tourism Development Index (TTDI) said that although global tourist arrivals are reaching pre-covid levels, further growth is unsure due to inflation, climate change and geopolitical tensions.

Covering 119 economies, the TTDI measures the set of factors and policies that enable the sustainable and resilient development of the T&T sector, which in turn contributes to the development of a country.

The top ten are:
United States 
United Kingdom 

Africa dominates the bottom of the list, with nine of the 10 worst nations, but the continent’s sub-Saharan region shows the most improvement since 2019. Europe remains the highest-performing region in the TTDI, ranking above the global average on most pillars, with Asia-Pacific second. Generally, the more developed and high-income economies within the APAC region such as Japan, Australia, South Korea and Singapore feature quality transportation and digital infrastructure, high levels of openness and supportive environments that guarantee high standards in business activities, safety and security, healthcare and workforce quality.

San Diego, California

Digitally, more than 15 million keywords were analyzed across 199 countries and territories, in twenty-one languages: The 96-page report’s Japanese Partner Institute was Waseda University, led by Prof. Jusuke Ikegami.  

What exactly is the TTDI? The index ranks countries around the world based on factors like safety and security, prioritisation of travel and tourism, air and ground travel infrastructure, natural and cultural resources and sustainability. 

WEF Executive Committee member Francisco Betti says it “Benchmarks and measures the set of factors and policies that enable the sustainable and resilient development of the T&T sector, which in turn contributes to the development of a country.” 

The index is a direct evolution of the Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index (TTCI), which has been published biennially since 2007. By allowing cross-country comparison and by benchmarking countries’ progress on the drivers of T&T development, the index informs policies and investment decisions related to the development of T&T businesses and the sector as a whole. It also offers unique insights into the strengths and areas for improvement of each country to support their efforts to enhance the long-term growth of their T&T sector in a sustainable and resilient manner.”

Some countries and governments have done a better job minimizing risks and maximizing their travel and tourism potential, said the report’s co-author, Prof. Iis Tussyadiah, Head of School of Hospitality and Tourism Management at the University of Surrey.

Spain, France, and Australia also ranked in the top five, as a newcomer came top of the list: the United States, which scored high in business environment, air transport infrastructure and natural resources. This reflects the robust infrastructure, ease of travel between cities, diverse natural and cultural destinations and traveller-friendly resources—such as guides to cities, parks and other attractions. 

Full report here:

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