WEF Report on tourist destinations

Spain, France, Germany, Japan and the United States are the world’s most travel-ready nations, according to the latest travel and tourism ranking of the World Economic Forum.

In the case of Spain, which has claimed the top spot in the index since 2015, its popularity is bolstered by a world-class ranking in natural and cultural resources – from its vibrant cities to sunny beaches, and a diverse cultural programme that spans medieval festivals to contemporary art.

Infrastructure is another important measure of a country’s travel competitiveness, and on this criteria Spain rates highly, having spent millions of euros in the past decade on updating roads, railways and airports.

The surest way for a country to benefit from its tourist industry, it explains, is to invest in infrastructure that keeps the needs of local residents as well as visitors in mind.

Japan continues to win global recognition for the quality of its public transportation and customer service. It placed fourth in a report that ranks locations based on how competitive they are as tourist destinations.

The report is the work of Swiss-based World Economic Forum. Every two years, the organization judges 140 countries and territories according to 90 factors.

Spain kept the top spot. The report credits the country’s natural and cultural resources, among other factors.

Bangkok was named the most-visited city for the fourth consecutive year, with about 22.8 million visitors reported in the annual rankings by MasterCard.

Paris and London were ranked second and third, each with about 19.1 million arrivals, trailed by Dubai with 15.9 million.

Other Southeast Asian cities, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur were fifth and sixth in the rankings, based on third-party research, proprietary analysis and public data across 200 destination cities.

New York, Istanbul, Tokyo and Antalya, Turkey, rounded out the top 10.

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