Visa cardholders traveled the globe last year spending $57 billion, a 6% jump over 2011. Japan was a hotspot according to the Visa Insights 2012 Travel Snapshots report. Cardholders from Brazil, Canada, Mexico and the United States increased their spending there by 25%.
There was also a substantial increase in tourists from China to the U.S.For the first time since 2009, China made the number three spot for inbound tourism, displacing the U.K. Chinese tourists increased their U.S. spending by 30%.
Other highlights from the report by Visa cardholders include:
- $948 million spentin Japan by visitors from Brazil, Canada, Mexico and the U.S.
- $585 million spent in the U.S. by cardholders from Africa, an increase of 17%
- $57 billion in total tourism spending by cardholders from Brazil, Canada, Mexico and the U.S.
The Visa Insights report includes data on spending on Visa-branded debit, credit and prepaid cards by international visitors from select countries during the 2012 calendar year and includes travel spending data from Visa Europe.
Visa says they have seen an increase in international travel spending over the last two years. The company’s head of North American Consumer Credit, Nick Talwar, attributes that in part to the increase in consumers’ ability to easily use electronic payments for goods and services while travelling internationally.
Visa travel benefits
Visa has a zero-liability fraud policy that protects cardholders from fraudulent activity on their cards – an important feature for international travelers who may be making purchases at unfamiliar merchants and using foreign ATMs. Additionally, Visa Signature-branded cards offer many benefits for travelers, such as travel insurance and 24/7 concierge service.
Many Visa-branded cards also have no foreign transaction fee, saving cardholders an average of 2-3% on all overseas transactions they make with their debit or credit card.