Seoul ranked third in terms of human resources in tourism industry, and fifth in urbanization.
&Has Seoul become a popular tourist destination? What is it about Seoul that is appealing to international tourists? The results of a survey released in August answer these questions.
Seoul city and the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) developed and conducted the Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index (TTCI). Seoul ranked fifth in this index following Tokyo, Sydney, Singapore and Beijing.
The survey conducted of 12 major tourist destinations across the Asia-Pacific region including Seoul, Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai, Tokyo, Osaka, Singapore, Sydney, Bangkok, Manila, Kuala Lumpur and Auckland. The survey results show that Seoul’s tourism competitiveness is fairly high. It ranked third in human resources, fifth in urbanization and sixth in tourism business environment and tourism governance.
Seoul topped the list in terms of information connection, hygiene, water quality and city tour websites
The TTCI is comprised of 61 indicators in six different criteria such as tourism business environment and infrastructure, business value, urbanization, tourism governance, knowledge resources and human resources. These indicators include the number of hotel rooms, convenience of location, number of World Heritage sites, airport fees, information connection, hygiene, CO2 emissions, overseas media exposure, number of smart phone applications, urban tourism websites and public services.
Among these indicators, Seoul ranked first in information connection, hygiene, urban tourism websites and water quality. Especially, in terms of urban tourism websites, Seoul’s score (7.00) was far higher than that of Hong Kong (4.57) which ranked second. Seoul placed third in terms of capacity of sports stadiums, number of ATMs accepting visa cards, and public services, and ninth in terms of number of hotel rooms, shopping environment, number of convention facilities, real economic growth rate, city marketing and its brand effect. The city placed tenth in overseas media exposure, and eleventh in government expenditures in tourism. However, it ranked the lowest in price of fuel.
A city official said, “The Seoul Metropolitan Government needs to focus on building tourism infrastructure and governance to survive fierce competition in the world tourism markets and develop itself into an international tourist destination.”
Seoul will continue to implement a policy of lowering lodging expenses.
Seoul city is planning to strengthen its weak points as noted by this survey. In an attempt to do this, Seoul will continue to implement its policy of lowering lodging charges, and develop marketing strategies targeting various markets. In addition, it will nurture tourism experts and create more jobs in the tourism industry.