PATA forecasts strong gains in international tourists to Asia Pacific in 2024-2026

Pre-Covid peaks to be surpassed in 2024
/ New Delhi
PATA forecasts strong gains in international tourists to Asia Pacific in 2024-2026

By the end of 2026, Asia is forecast to account for more than 61 pc of all foreign arrivals across Asia Pacific

Travel association PATA has forecast a strong growth in number of international visitors to Asia Pacific region in 2024, when it is expected to surpass 2019 peaks.
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Pacific Asia Travel Association’s (PATA), a leading pan-APAC travel association, says that strong annual increases in numbers for 2024 have been recorded, and the growth momentum is forecast to continue to 2026. 

By the end of 2026, Asia is forecast to account for more than 61 pc of all foreign arrivals across Asia Pacific.

In its latest report, PATA says that the pre-Covid levels of IVAs shall be surpassed in 2024 under the mild scenario and in 2025 under the medium scenario.

However, the severe scenario remains a possibility and arrival numbers are predicted to remain around 13 pc points below the 2019 benchmark by the end of 2026 under such conditions, says the report.

It adds that the growth felt across the Asia Pacific region validates the enormous work by destinations in luring international travellers and that the complete visitor economy remains vital for national economic recovery in the region.

While annual increases of IVA numbers into and across Asia Pacific are expected to be robust from 2024 to 2026, the report says significant differences exist for each of the three destination regions as well as for each of the 39 individual destinations covered in the report and by each of the possible scenarios.

Noor Ahmad Hamid

Noor Ahmad Hamid

“The latest PATA forecasts shed light on the swift recovery of the international arrivals numbers in and across the Asia Pacific region, showing signs of strong visitor growth each year between 2024 and 2026 under the mild and medium scenarios, such trends were somewhat driven by joint agreements on destination visa requirements.” says PATA CEO Noor Ahmad Hamid.

The statement adds that in absolute terms, the number of IVAs predicted for 2024 ranges from a high of 750 million under the mild scenario, to 619 million under the medium scenario, and 477 million under the severe scenario.

“We cannot, however, expect uniformity in growth from that and other source markets across all the destinations of Asia Pacific, as many will increase their inbound counts at their own pace and in their own time. Furthermore, we must recognise this as the time of fast-paced and constant changes. All of us must remain vigilant of sudden shifts within the industry and be prepared with viable strategies and appropriate coping mechanisms for future uncertainties,” adds Hamid.

PATA says that annual growth rate for IVAs into and across Asia, for example, is predicted to be 34 pc in 2024 under the mild scenario, 29 pc under the medium scenario, and 11 pc under the severe scenario.

The rate of increase in annual IVA numbers is also predicted to decrease slightly during the three years leading up to 2026, reflecting the return to a more stable longer-term growth rate as the ‘s-shaped’ travel demand curve returns to a more consistent position.

The statement adds that while the Americas and the Pacific regions are forecast to have less potent growth compared to Asia, they still have generally significant growth rates and absolute volume increases, with some minor fluctuations over the forecast period.

It says that despite the prevailing scenario conditions, it seems Asia will maintain a powerful advantage in IVA numbers each year from 2024 to 2026, capturing more than 70 pc of arrivals into and across Asia Pacific. Asia is also predicted to dominate as a supplier region of IVAs, returning to a significant level of dominance by supplying more than 58 pc of all IVAs into Asia Pacific in 2024, under each of the three scenarios. The Americas and Europe follow with shares of around 19 pc and 14 pc that same year.

“Even as arrival numbers climb on an upward trajectory, the issues of staffing and maintaining service excellence remain critical issues for destinations within the region, especially now as global competition seeks out the growing source markets contained within Asia Pacific. Any aspect of complacency will be an ever-present danger and must be avoided,” adds Hamid.

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