Released to coincide with World Tourism Day, the 2017 Global Destination Cities Index looks at visitor volume and spending at the 132 largest cities in the world.
Carlos Menendez, president of enterprise partnerships at Mastercard, stated that the company is seeing more people than ever visiting cities for business or leisure.
At the same time, "we know that people expect their experiences when traveling to be both seamless and personal,” he added. He then highlighted that cities that apply technology to simplify services and connect people with their passion points can become true destination cities and will realize the benefits of increased visitors and greater spending.
In 2016, Bangkok welcomed 19.4 million international overnight visitors and ranked fifth in international overnight visitors' spending, totaling US$14.08 billion. Leisure was the main purpose for visitors traveling to Bangkok, at 88.6%, significantly higher than business travelers, at 11.4%.
Recently this week, Pol. Gen. Asawin Kwanmuang, the governor of Bangkok, received a plaque from Donald Ong, Mastercard's country manager for Thailand and Myanmar, at Bangkok City Hall. The governor said he is ready to push forward and help Thailand's capital retain the title for the third year in a row by ensuring safety and security of tourists.