Asian outbound travel is expected to surge in the next decade, with increasing affluence and improved connectivity leading to a sharp rise in international holidays, a new report has forecast.
In its “Mapping the Future of Global Travel and Tourism in Asia Pacific” report, Visa predicted that 109 million Asia Pacific households will take at least one international trip per year by 2025, up 65% from 2015. And annual spending on international travel is expected to rise 8% to US$5,230 per household.
This growth, according to the report, will be driven by a growing middle class, greater internet connectivity, improved transport infrastructure and an aging global population with more time and money for leisure travel.
“Travelling internationally will become more common and attainable in the future thanks to changing demographics, combined with technology advances that make travelling abroad easier and less expensive,” said Wayne Best, Visa’s chief economist. “What will emerge is an expanding ‘travelling class’ that will spend a growing portion of their household income on cross-border travel.
“Tomorrow’s travelling class will likely be older and hail from emerging markets – looking very different from today’s typical international traveller,” he added.
Households in China (+86% to US$255 billion), Hong Kong (+78% to US$47.4bn) and Singapore (+99% to US$44.9bn) are expected to be the top Asia Pacific markets in terms of travel spending by 2025. However, emerging markets like Indonesia (+211%), Vietnam (+132%) and India (+101%) are expected to see the sharpest increases in spending.
The new “travelling class” predicted by Visa means households that earn at least US$20,000 per year, and the report estimates that by 2025, nearly half of all global households (945m) will be within this income range, spurring greater demand for international travel. And the majority of this growth will be from emerging markets.
These new travellers will also have a greater number of options, with more than 3,400 new airports expected to be constructed over the next decade, creating new routes and destinations. And the report also said that digital connectivity will foster “greater spontaneity in travel” as well as a greater array of personalised travel options.
Finally, the report stated that by 2025, travellers aged 65 and above will more than double their international travel to an estimated 180m trips, accounting for one-in-eight international trips globally. These older travellers, according to Visa, will be able to afford longer trips, pay higher prices for greater comfort, and also drive the medical tourism sector.