A report from the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) said international visitor arrivals in the Asia Pacific Region are forecasted to remain below 2019 levels until 2023.
In the Asia Pacific Visitor Forecasts 2021-2023 report, the report covered the mild, medium, and severe scenarios. “The report shows that even under a mild scenario, the Asia Pacific region in 2023 is likely to still have around four percent fewer arrivals compared to 2019,” PATA said.
Compared to the 703.35 million arrivals in 2019, it is expected that the international visitor arrivals to only reach up to 677.03 million. PATA projects that under the medium scenario, international visitor numbers in 2023 will only be 523.13 million, just three-quarters of the 2019 volume.
Contrary, under the severe scenario, foreign arrivals are forecasted to reach 342.84 million, less than half of the 2019 volume of international arrivals.
“The results are very uneven as well, not just under each scenario but also for the major destination regions of Asia Pacific,” PATA said.
There's a sharp decline of international visitor arrivals into and across Asia with a total of 70.64 million, data from PATA. PATA projected 34.18 million foreign visitor arrivals for this year and, it's expected to show an increase from 2020 numbers under the mild scenario.
However, from 2022 onwards it is forecasted that there will be an annual increase to gradually improve in volume under each of the three scenarios, PATA said.
Mario Hardy, PATA chief executive officer accentuates that there are promising signs for 2022 and 2023 in the growth of international visitor arrivals into and across the Asia Pacific even though it remains to be difficult in 2021.
“A return to near pre-COVID-19 levels of arrivals, while possible by 2023, appears now to be feasible, at least if conditions as they are now, abate quickly and permanently. Much, however, will depend on events during this present northern winter and the arrival and management of the more traditional flu season,” Hardy said.
Furthermore, Hardy emphasizes that the void left by the loss of foreign arrivals can be filled in many cases by domestic travels.
He added that perhaps the future depends more on the length of stay and visitor satisfaction for both types of the visitor (domestic and foreign) rather than on a generic and simple head-count of arrivals.
“Metrics that track such indicators will possibly become a new standard for determining tourism potential and performance in what is likely to continue being a volatile world,” Hardy said.