Expedia data reveals positive Taiwan tourism trends for 1st half of 2019

Despite China's recent travel ban, tourism from Hong Kong, Japan, US, South Korea shows upward trend

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(Photo by Unsplash user Vernon Raineil Cenzon)

(Photo by Unsplash user Vernon Raineil Cenzon)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – On Wednesday (Aug. 15), the international travel agency Expedia published data revealing tourism trends in Taiwan for the first half of 2019.

According to the report, the largest number of tourists visiting Taiwan from January to July this year came from Hong Kong, with tourists from Japan and United States taking second and third place respectively. The reports contradicts the common assertion that most tourists coming to Taiwan are Chinese.

Excluding travelers coming from Hong Kong, tourists coming from Chinese airports collectively accounted for the fifth largest source of visitors in the first half of 2019. Even South Korea was a larger source of tourists to Taiwan than those coming from the People’s Republic of China, according to the data.

Compared to data from the same period of 2018, Taiwan saw an overall increase of 15 percent in the demand for accommodation. What’s more, data shows that more foreigners are venturing out of the biggest cities when they visit, with accommodation bookings in Tainan, and Taoyuan increasing 35 percent year over year compared to 2018, and New Taipei increasing over 55 percent.

Liberty Times notes that foreign tourists are most likely to visit Taipei, with Kaohsiung and Taichung as the major secondary vacation destinations. Expedia reports that accommodation bookings for foreigners in Taiwan’s three largest cities showed remarkable growth in the first six months of 2019 at 10 percent, 20 percent, and 30 percent for Taipei, Kaohsiung, and Taichung, respectively.

Despite Beijing’s recent ban on individual tourists from China visiting Taiwan, which is expected to hurt Taiwan’s tourism industry in the second half of the year, a sustained increase in tourists from other countries and increased interest in locations outside of Taipei is an encouraging sign for the country’s long term tourism outlook.

Here is the list of the top ten origin countries for tourists coming to Taiwan in the first half of 2019, according to Expedia.

1. Hong Kong
2. Japan
3. United States
4. South Korea
5. China
6. Singapore
7. Indonesia
8. Thailand
9. Canada
10. Malaysia