Special Report

These Are the Countries That Spend the Most Abroad

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5. France
> Total amount spent in 2017: $41.4 billion
> Expenditure increase in one year: 0.8%
> Population: 67.1 million

France recorded the smallest increase in tourism spending abroad of all the countries on our top 10 list. Europe’s third biggest economy has been seeing very slow growth for years, struggling with high unemployment and huge budget deficits.

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4. United Kingdom
> Total amount spent in 2017: $71.4 billion
> Expenditure increase in one year: 2.4%
> Population: 66 million

The unknown consequences of Brexit, which is due to take effect at the end of March 2019, are looming. The United Kingdom was the slowest growing economy in the G7 club in 2017. Spending abroad grew by only 2.4% between 2016 and 2017, the second smallest increase among the top 10 spenders.

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3. Germany
> Total amount spent in 2017: $89.1 billion
> Expenditure increase in one year: 9.4%
> Population: 82.3 million

The German economy grew by 2.5% in 2017. Local media reported this was the fastest expansion since 2011. Wages have been growing, too. It’s no surprise then that Germans are spending more when traveling abroad. The 9.4% increase between 2016 and 2017 is the third largest on our list, after Russia and South Korea.

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2. United States
> Total amount spent in 2017: $135 billion
> Expenditure increase in one year: 9.3%
> Population: 325.7 million

Tourism expenditure from the United States increased by $13 billion in 2017 compared with 2016, or just over 9%. This is the largest increase in absolute terms among the top 10 spenders. Americans are traveling abroad in record numbers due to a strong dollar, Brexit, and an abundance of low-cost carriers.

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1. China
> Total amount spent in 2017: $257.7 billion
> Expenditure increase in one year: 4.7%
> Population: 1.4 billion

China continues to lead global outbound travel expenditure. Chinese spent almost $258 billion on a total of 142 million international trips. This was about one-fifth of the world’s total spending on tourism. While abroad, they liked to spend their money the most on whiskey tastings, Northern Lights viewing expeditions, voluntary camps, and outdoor activities.