Dubai Found World’s 5th Favourite Travel Spot


Every year, different rankings are trying to reveal which city or country is the most visited in the world and every time the winners are almost the same – Paris, London, New York. Every city is attractive and unique in its own way, but this year, international travelers show that the traditional European dominance can’t last forever.[wpsr_retweet]

Bangkok comes at second place while the Middle Eastern“City of Gold”, or Dubai, lands at the prestigious fifth position for the first time in the ranking’s history.

The latest MasterCard Global Destination Cities Index, which ranks 132 cities around the world based on the total number of international visitors and on the travelers’ spending, found Dubai the 5th top spot for international tourists. This isn’t the first time Dubai has been chosen among the world’s most popular destinations. In fact it is the most visited city in the Middle East, being a real magnet for the Arab World, as well as for Brits, Asians and Europeans, too. Last year, the World Economic Forum ranked the UAE as the 28th most competitive country for travel and tourism and Dubai is no doubt, the most popular of the emirates. Its beaches and year-long summer, affinity towards luxury, and rapid development and modern architecture are attracting millions of leisure and business tourists every year.

According to the list, 12 million people will visit Dubai this year, compared to 10 million international visitors for 2013 and 8.8 million for 2012. These numbers are astounding, considering the population of Dubai which currently stands at about 2.2 million people. If MasterCard’s predictions turn out to be true, this will mean that for every resident, Dubai will receive 4.8 visitors. In terms of spent money, the numbers are even more impressive – international travelers will spend around $3,900 per resident. This year, Dubai easily outperforms Istanbul and even New York, which were ahead of the emirate until now. So, which are the other winners in this year’s Global Destination Cities Index by MasterCard?

The most popular city for international travelers in 2014 is London with 18.7 million visitors, followed by last year’s No.1 Bangkok. In 2014, it is expected to host 18.37 million people, which is a decline of 11% from 2013, resulting from the recent political unrest in the country. With an estimated 15.57 million tourists, Paris comes third, while Singapore is fourth with 12.47 million visitors and Dubai is fifth with 11.95 million.

The ranking also identified five leading trends in international travel:

  • The Asia/Pacific is the big winner, being home to half of the top 10 cities in the list
  • 67% of London’s international visitors come from Europe
  • Dubai is among the fastest growing global cities for international travel. According to the predictions, it is on its way to overtake Paris and Singapore within five years.
  • The capital and largest city of Peru, Lima, is the best performing city in the region.
  • New York will be the most visited city in North America this year, but Chicago is expected to be the fastest growing one.

Here are the top 10 most visited cities in the world:

  • London
  • Bangkok
  • Paris
  • Singapore
  • Dubai
  • New York
  • Istanbul
  • Kuala Lumpur
  • Hong Kong
  • Seoul


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