Tourism in Southeast Asia continued its recovery in July 2023, with all countries in the region reporting positive growth. For the first time, the region is experiencing growth across the board. International tourist arrivals increased by 12.31%, from 6,273,312 to 7,045,482 arrivals.
In terms of leading positions in categories, there are not many changes. Thailand remains the top destination for international tourists in Southeast Asia. Cambodia is the country with the highest recovery rate in the region. And Vietnam is the country with the highest target completion rate as of July 2023.
Recovery and Tourism Target Rate
As of July, Cambodia had an impressive recovery index and was close to achieving full recovery with 91.4%. Vietnam held the second place with a recovery rate of 78.93%, closely followed by Singapore at 78.87%.
In terms of achieving their 2023 target, Vietnam led with a completion rate of 82.67%, welcoming a total of 6.6 million international arrivals. However, despite being the most visited country with over 15 million arrivals, Thailand had the lowest target completion rate in the region at only 51.35%. Singapore, the second most visited country with 7.7 million arrivals, had the second lowest target completion rate at just 55%. Given the contrast, the pressing question that emerges is: should the country celebrate upon reaching the highest target, or should it take a moment to pause and engage in deeper reflection among the tourism performance compared to other countries?
Here are some highlights
Top 3 Southeast Asian destinations with the largest numbers of international arrivals in July 2023:
Thailand: Welcomed 2,490,643 international arrivals and achieved its highest growth rate of the year at 10%.
Singapore: Welcomed 1,419,606 international arrivals and achieved the highest growth rate in the region at 25% compared to last month.
Indonesia: Welcomed 1,122,954 international arrivals and achieved a growth rate of 5% for two consecutive months.
In terms of recovery rate:
Cambodia: Achieved a recovery rate of 91.04%
Vietnam: Achieved a recovery rate of 78.93%
Singapore: Achieved a recovery rate of 78.87%\
In terms of Aviation Sector:
In the aviation sector, Indonesia continues to hold the largest capacity in Southeast Asia, accounting for 29% of the region’s capacity with 10.7 million seats. Vietnam follows as the second largest, offering 6.7 million seats in August 2023, which is 18% of the region’s capacity, despite a 6% decline from July 2023. Thailand ranks third with 6.3 million seats, making up 17% of the region’s capacity, marking a 3% increase from the previous month.
When it comes to domestic flights, the Hanoi (HAN) to Ho Chi Minh City (SGN) route remains the most popular in Southeast Asia with 978k seats, even with a decrease of 2% from July 2023. The top ten domestic routes in the region remain unchanged, half of which are internal flights within Indonesia. The route from Jakarta to Surabaya saw the most significant growth in capacity, increasing by 18% compared to July 2023.
In terms of international flights, Singapore maintains its position as a key hub in Southeast Asia, with seven out of the top ten international routes either starting or ending in Singapore. The busiest route remains Kuala Lumpur (KUL) to Singapore (SIN) with 408k seats. The top four international routes involve Singapore and other major regional hub airports – Kuala Lumpur (KUL), Jakarta (CGK), Bangkok (BKK), and Denpasar-Bali (DPS).