Destinations Asia

Korea tourism numbers cross 11 million in 2012 as Gangnam wave still to come

Excerpt from TravelDailyNews

Jan 02, 2013 4:24 am

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Even as Korea prepares for possible Gangnam-influenced tourism wave, Chinese and Japanese tourists are already buffeting up that total number.

— Rafat Ali

Report: The Rise of the Silent Traveler

In Korea, total foreign arrivals are likely to surpass 11.1 million in 2012, the culture ministry said Monday, due mainly to Chinese and Japanese tourists. The figure represents a 13.4 percent increase from 2011. Still, it falls a bit short of South Korea’s initial goal of attracting 11.3 million foreign tourists this year. It was the first time that the number of foreign tourists topped 10 million in a year.

The total number of Chinese tourists is expected to reach 2.83 million in 2012, up 24.7 percent, while Japanese tourists are expected to increase 6.7 percent on-year to 3.51 million.

Foreign tourists’ spending in South Korea increased 13.7 percent in 2012 to US$14.1 billion, though South Korea could post a trade deficit in tourism as outbound visitors outnumbered inbound ones.

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