Countries That Spend The Most On International Tourism

China spent $164.9 billion USD on international tourism in the year in 2014, the highest in the world.

Tourism often plays a vital role in country’s economic development. Tourism is a primary source of revenue for the inbound country and a major source of employment in most of the countries. Tourism ranks second or third in most economies. International or foreign tourists play a significant role in promoting tourism in most these countries. Most countries expenditures on international tourism are increasing significantly every year. International tourist spending is expenses incurred by residents of a country who are visiting another country. These expenses include payments for international transport, expenditure on goods and services in the visited country. International expenditure can be defined simply as the amount one spends in another country during his visit.

Countries That Spend The Most On International Tourism


China is currently dominating the world travel chart by the number of Chinese visiting other countries.Chinese international travelers are rapidly increasing because of the increasing numbers of middle class Chinese. International travelers increased by 20% in 2014 and it are largely because of the Chinese expanding economy. International travelers spent a total of $164.9 billion accounting for 13% of the world’s expenditure on international tourism. The spending was motivated by the availability of cash, removal of travel restrictions and better flight connections. Most countries are currently marketing their tourism sector in China with the aim of benefiting from China.

United States

US recorded international tourism expenditure of $110.8 billion in 2014 with Mexico, Canada, and the UK being the preferred destinations. 2014 spending amount represented 11$ increase in international tourism expenditure from 2013 and accounts for 9% of the world’s expenditure on international tourism. 79% of the expenditure was on leisure with 4 out of 5 people traveling for leisure while the rest was spent on business travels, medical, and education. International tourism supported around 10 million jobs for US citizens and $25 billion in wages.


Germany was the third biggest spender in international tourism. Germany accounts for 7% of the overall international tourism expenditure with a total of $92.2 billion spent in 2014. The expenses increased by only 1% compared to 2013. Most of the outbound tourists visited US, Thailand, China, and the UK. Most visits were for leisure purposes with hotels benefiting from tourists from Germany.

United Kingdom

An estimated $57.6 billion was spent by the UK on international tourist making the UK the second highest spender in Europe after Germany. Germany spent more in America and China than it did in Europe. Expenditure on leisure especially sports related activities was highest compared to business travel, education, and health.

What Drives International Tourists To Vacation Abroad?

Other countries that spent significantly on international tourism include Russia, France, Canada, and Italy. The US was the primary beneficiary of the millions of tourists visiting the country in 2014. China and Europe also benefited from international tourism expenditure during the same year. These countries are mainly famous with international tourist because of their diverse culture, the presence of several UNESCO World Heritage Sites, favorable weather, quality education, and open business opportunities. They will likely continue being the preferred destinations for most tourists in the future as they continue to improve their respective tourism sectors.

Countries That Spend The Most On International Tourism

RankCountryInternational tourism expenditure (2014)Market Share (%)
1 China$164.9 billion13
2 United States$110.8 billion9
3 Germany$92.2 billion7
4 United Kingdom$57.6 billion5
5 Russia$50.4 billion4
6 France$47.8 billion4
7 Canada$33.8 billion3
8 Italy$28.8 billion2
9 Australia$26.3 billion2
10 Brazil$25.6 billion2

More in Travel