The Dominican Republic is the “Most Visited Destination” this year, according to a major industry reference for global travel trends and insights. In announcing the performance of the top global destinations of 2022, ForwardKeys revealed the top country list is headed by the Dominican Republic, and the top city list by Antalya in Turkey.
Between January 1 and October 18 this year, based on the latest available air ticketing data, the Dominican Republic welcomed five percent more visitors than it did in the 2019 benchmark year. It is followed by Turkey, Costa Rica, Mexico and Jamaica, the only other Caribbean nation to place in the top 20.
According to ForwardKeys, the strong representation of Central American and Caribbean destinations towards the top of the list reflects the relative strength of the U.S. outbound market and the approach taken by many highly tourism-dependent countries in the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico, which, throughout the pandemic, imposed less severe COVID-19 travel restrictions than elsewhere, and in doing so maintained their visitor economies. As the year has progressed, they have consolidated their leadership position and begun to exceed pre-pandemic volumes.
Olivier Ponti, VP of Insights with ForwardKeys, said: “Looking at the world on a regional basis, one must admire Caribbean countries for their early efforts to sustain visitor arrivals in the face of the pandemic and their continued growth in an increasingly competitive travel landscape.
“The Middle East also stands out, as it has helped to accelerate its recovery by hosting major global events such as the Dubai World Expo, Formula One grand prix in various Gulf locations and, above all, the FIFA World Cup in Qatar. The Gulf has also seen a relatively robust comeback in business travel, a segment whose recent revival has come as a surprise to many.”