SOUTH KOREA. The bounce in Chinese visitors to South Korea continued in November 2018, with a 35.1% year-on-year increase to 404,000 arrivals from the world’s second-largest economy.
The latest figures from the Korea Tourism Organization highlight the ongoing recovery in Chinese visits following the THAAD missile dispute, which began in 2017 and saw Beijing ban Chinese group tours to South Korea.
However, total Chinese visitors remain down on levels before THAAD. In November 2016, almost 517,000 Chinese visitors arrived in South Korea.
The accumulative growth in Chinese visitors for the year to November 2018 was 14.0% to 4,370,000.
The figures also show a 40.5% increase in visitors from Japan to almost 300,000. The accumulative increase of Japanese visitors was 27% to 2,690,000.
Visitors from the USA rose 12.8% to 78,000 year-on-year. Americans now account for 5.8% of all visits to South Korea, slightly less than all Europeans, who represent 5.9%. Accumulative numbers of Americans for the first 11 months rose 11.8% to 802,000.
Departures by South Korean nationals rose 3.1% to 2,295,810 in November. The accumulative figures for the same group in the year to November constituted a rise of 8.8% to just over 26 million.