Travel industry analyst ForwardKeys revealed that the Asia Pacific region has started to recover with people travelling to visit friends and relatives being the strongest driver, according to its Most Visited Destinations report released on Thursday.
Based on the latest available air ticketing data between 1 January and 18 October, travel in Pakistan and Bangladesh showed that it was “just five percent and eight percent down” from 2019 levels, respectively.
“Leisure travel to the Maldives, down seven percent, and Fiji, down 22%, both tropical island paradises, also held up well,” the Spain-based agency stated.
It added that consumer demand for beach holidays has led the revival, with business travel and city tourism lagging until the start of the autumn.
“There has also been a trend towards travel in premium cabins, partly fuelled by so-called ‘revenge travel’, which has seen consumers spending more on value-added travel services. That syndrome, plus the increasing cost of fuel has driven a strong increase in fares,” the report added.
According to the report, Antalya, the largest city on the Turkish riviera, welcomed 66% more visitors than it did in the corresponding period in 2019, making it the best performer among top destinations.
Also in the list were two cities in Pakistan - Lahore, which recorded four percent more visitors between January and October this year than in 2019, and Islamabad, where visitors arrival was down one percent.
Meanwhile, it noted that China remained a vital outbound market for the travel and hospitality sectors as well as luxury brands.
“But until that situation stabilises, businesses and destinations ought to think about how they can better capitalise on the many travelling Americans,” it added.