The president of Enrique Pena Nieto celebrated on Tuesday the result of the report of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) that positioned Mexico as the eighth most visited country in the world by receiving 35 million international tourists in 2016.
According to this report, Mexico rose one position in the world ranking and is located as the second country that received more tourists in the American continent – behind the United States – and the first in Latin America.
Given this, the Secretariat of Tourism (SECTUR) stressed that if this growth trend continues, at the end of the six-year term of Enrique Peña Nieto, Mexico could climb two more positions in the world ranking, becoming the sixth largest country in the world.
It should be noted that Germany with 35.6 million tourists and the United Kingdom with 35.8 million exceed Mexico by only a few thousand people, which could be reached by the end of 2018.
UNWTO experts described the performance of tourism globally in the first four months of this 2017 as the best in the last 12 years, exceeding the already positive expectations that were at the beginning of this year.
What is the reason for Mexico’s growth in tourism?
According to the Panorama of Tourism Activity conducted by the National Tourism Business Council (CNET) in 2016 the balance of the Tourism Balance in Mexico grew by 22.4% to $9.3 billion dollars.
Similarly, it points out that the positive behavior in international tourist arrivals has been maintained in the last five years, as these have grown at an average annual rate of 10.6%, while the income from international visitors has grown to 11.3%.
The positive performance of international tourism was due to a multi-factorial behavior which was influenced by the following reasons
1.-The marketing actions of the Mexican Tourism Promotion Council
The good perception of the country abroad has contributed to the fact that more and more tourists choose our country as a tourist destination. For this reason, the Tourism Promotion Council has been in charge of intensifying Mexico’s presence through pavilions, tourist fairs and dual years all over the world, placing great interest in emerging markets in Asia and Europe.
2.-The economic recovery of the United States
The U.S. remains the main tourism market for Mexico with 61.5% of travelers to the country. The economic recovery of the northern neighbor after the crisis of 2008 and the increase in the price of the dollar has boosted U.S. tourism as well as greater connectivity with the opening of new flights to various points of the country.
3.- Migration facilitation for some South American countries
The alliances that the Federal Government has made with several South American countries in commercial matters, as in the case of the Pacific Alliance and Mercosur, have allowed the increase of capital and people from countries such as Colombia, Chile and Peru by facilitating the migration processes for foreigners and lowering the price of flights.
4.- The growth of the tourist offer in Mexico
According to the latest Statistical Compendium of National Tourism made by Sectur, Mexico has a supply of more than 20,000 hotels and 736,000 rooms of all categories in over 600 cities nationwide, which diversifies accommodation options and prices for foreigners.
5.- Opening in terms of air connectivity
Mexico’s presence in the world would not be possible without greater connectivity, in addition to the construction of Terminal 2 of the AICM, Terminal 3 of Cancun Airport and the opening of air ports throughout the country. During this six-year period, flights began to operate to Guangzhou with China Southern Airlines, to Rome with Alitalia, to Tokyo with All Nippon Airways (ANA), to Medellin with Viva Colombia, to Warsaw with TUI Poland and Condor & Neckermann; and to 94 routes with the United States through Interjet, Volaris, Southwest Airlines, Virgin America, Aeroméxico, American Airlines and United Airlines.
In addition to the newly established routes, more than 25 existing routes have confirmed additional flight frequency or upgraded aircraft, contributing to additional capacity as well as optimizing the convenience and experience of the traveler.
6.- The appointment of a greater number of Magic Villages and Protected Areas
Not only the frequency of planes has increased but also the tourist destinations, Mexico has 111 magic villages, 34 World Heritage sites, the second country with more ecosystems in 181 natural protected areas and new tourist destinations that have positioned themselves worldwide as Holbox, Bacalar, San Miguel de Allende, Celestun, La Paz, Riviera Nayarita, among others.
7.- Mexico’s presence in the world through the arts and sports
Part of the promotion of Mexico abroad has been due to the series of shows that have been organized within the country, such is the case of the Cirque Du Soleil show “A Waking Dream of Mexico”, the recording and parade of the James Bond saga film “Spectre” in Mexico City, the Mexican Formula 1 Grand Prix, as well as various NFL and NBA games in national territory that have brought large numbers of fans from all over the world.
8.- The exchange rate between the peso and other currencies
The dollar-peso parity has been a determining factor in Americans deciding to visit Mexico, even ahead of destinations within the United States. The increase in the price of the dollar and the euro, as has happened in recent years, translates into greater purchasing power for foreigners and therefore greater access to the Mexican tourism market by being cheaper.