In 2017, Spain became the second country in the world with the highest number of international tourist visits, surpassing the United States and ranking only behind France, according to data recently published by the World Tourism Organization (WTO) in its summary of world tourism activity corresponding to the year 2017.
Spain received the visit of 81.8 million tourists throughout 2017, 8.6% more than the previous year. The first country remained France, with a total of 86.9 million international tourist visits, 5.1% more than in 2016.
The United States fell to third place, although the data is not yet definitive. UNWTO attributes the figure for 2016 (75.9 million tourists) for the time being, although during the first nine months of 2017 -which is definitive data- the number of international visits to the United States was reduced by 3.8%.
The list of the ten countries with the most international tourists throughout 2017 is completed by China (60.7 million), Italy (58.3), Mexico (39.3), United Kingdom (37.7), Turkey ( 37.6), Germany (37.5) and Thailand (35.4 million). The two countries on this list that grew the most last year were Turkey (+ 24.1%) and Italy (+ 11.2%). The only setback among the top ten was that of the United States.
UNWTO also offers a ranking of the ten countries with the highest revenues for international tourism. In this case, the clear leader of the ranking is the United States, with an income volume of 210.700 million dollars.
Spain took second place in the ranking with 68.000 million dollars of income for international tourism after growing by 10.1%, and remained ahead of France, which was third with an income of 60.700 million dollars. France grew by 9%, somewhat below Spain.
Behind the United States, Spain and France in terms of volume of tourist revenues were placed, in this order, Thailand, United Kingdom, Italy, Australia, Germany, Macao (China) and Japan.
Worldwide, international tourist arrivals increased by 6.8% in 2017, the largest increase since 2009, and stood at 1,232 million trips, 84 million more than in 2016.