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Bangkok among Top Destinations For Dining (3rd) & Shopping (6th)

Boris Sullivan

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With Global Destination Cities Index: Indulgences, Mastercard takes a deep dive into where visitors spend the most on dining and shopping around the world.

The Mastercard Global Destination Cities Index ranks 162 cities in terms of total international overnight visitors and the amount spent by visitors in the destination cities in 2017.

With Mastercard Global Destination Cities Index: Indulgences, we look at the amount spent within those cities on dining and shopping. The amount isn’t insignificant, nor is the impact those dollars have on cities’ local economies and the wallets of travelers who go there.

Top cities for dining

Whether it be Emirati Harees in Dubai, paella in Palma de Mallorca, pad Thai in Bangkok or champagne in Paris, people are eating—and spending—in these four cities more than any others.

Cities such as Singapore and London are also in the top 10 for overall food and beverage spend, but it’s worth noting that travelers are spending a lower percentage of their travel budgets on food in those cities (12.9% and 17.6%), respectively.

Top Global Cities for Dining, Ranked by Dollars Spent

City2017 Expenditure on Food & Beverage (US$ billions)2017 Expenditure (US$ billions)2017 Share of Overall Expenditure Spent on Food & Beverage
1Dubai, UAE$5.94$29.7020.0%
2Palma de Mallorca, Spain$3.78$11.9631.6%
3Bangkok, Thailand$3.37$16.3620.6%
4Paris$3.20$13.0524.5%
5New York$3.20$16.1019.9%
6London$3.08$17.4517.6%
7Santa Cruz de la Palma, Spain$2.44$8.4328.9%
8Tokyo$2.41$11.9120.3%
9Istanbul$2.23$6.7533.0%
10Singapore$2.20$17.0212.9%

Top cities for shopping

GDCI: Indulgences reveals that travelers are also spending big in Dubai and London when it comes to shopping, whether purchasing clothes, souvenirs or other goods.

That said, visitors to London, Seoul and Johannesburg, in particular, might want to bring a bigger suitcase. International travelers to all three are spending at least 40 percent of their travel budgets on shopping.

Top Global Cities for Shopping, Ranked by Dollars Spent

City2017 Expenditure on Shopping (US$ billions)2017 Expenditure (US$ billions)2017 Share of Overall Expenditure Spent on Shopping
1Dubai, UAE$8.91$29.7030.0%
2London$8.54$17.4549.0%
3Makkah, Saudi Arabia$5.76$18.4531.2%
4Tokyo, Japan$5.13$11.9143.1%
5Singapore, Singapore$4.70$17.0227.6%
6Bangkok, Thailand$3.75$16.3622.9%
7Seoul, Korea$3.42$7.2147.4%
8New York$3.40$16.1021.1%
9Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia$2.69$8.5931.3%
10Paris$2.42$13.0518.5%

There are eight cities on the top list for dining and seven cities on the top list for shopping that are also a part of the Mastercard Priceless Cities experiential travel platform where travelers from over 90 countries can access unique and unforgettable experiences in over 40 cities around the world.

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