Visa sponsored the Cities Economic Impact Report in collaboration with Oxford Economics, which analysed crucial indicators such as the Travel & Tourism industry’s impact on GDP, employment, and traveler expenditure. The research focused on the sector’s influence in the five ‘city-powerhouses’ of Western Europe – London, Paris, Berlin, Rome, and Madrid.
As per the global tourism organization’s findings, the Travel & Tourism industry contributed more than $83.5 billion to the economies of the five major European capitals in 2019. In 2022, this number was only 15% less than 2019 figures, with the sector contributing nearly $71 billion.
Among the five capital cities, Paris has exhibited the most robust revival, whereas the other four capitals have reported a slower recovery, ranging from 18% to 30% below 2019 levels. Paris’s Travel & Tourism sector contributed $38 billion to the GDP in 2019 and has made a substantial comeback, with the 2022 estimates reaching just 6% below pre-pandemic levels, at around $35.7 billion.
Even though the Travel & Tourism industry contributed nearly $15 billion to London’s GDP in 2022, its recovery to 2019 levels slightly lags behind that of Berlin. Berlin’s Travel & Tourism sector contributed over $7.7 billion to the city’s economy in 2022, a drop of 18% compared to 2019.
Madrid’s Travel & Tourism sector contributed over $5.5 billion to its GDP in 2022, which is 24% lower than the 2019 levels. Meanwhile, Rome is experiencing the most sluggish revival with a 30% decrease in sector contribution from 2019, amounting to just under $7 billion.
Julia Simpson, WTTC President & CEO, said: “Travellers are flocking back to Paris, London, Berlin, Madrid, and Rome. Business travel is growing steadily. And China’s reopening is bringing welcome visitors to cities across Europe. Tourists provide a massive boost to both the economy and job creation.
“It is crucial that the national and local governments continue to recognise the importance of Travel & Tourism for the local and national economies, jobs, and businesses.”