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June 7, 2019

Philadelphia sees increase in visitation from overseas markets

International Hall photo courtesy of Philadelphia International Airport.

Over the last five years, the City of Brotherly Love has seen an increase of 9% in overseas visitors. While half of these travelers continue to come from Western Europe, China is now the second largest representation by country, and South Korea is growing at the fastest pace among the top ten markets.

Top 10 Philadelphia Overseas Markets

1. United Kingdom

2. China

3. Germany

4. India

5. France

6. South Korea

7. Italy

8. The Netherlands

9. Spain

10. Ireland

Why more visitors are traveling to Philadelphia

Time Out recently ranked Philadelphia number 16 out of the 48 Best Cities in the World in 2019. GQ named the City of Brotherly Love the 2018 City of the Year and Travel + Leisure called Philadelphia the Best Food City on the East Coast. Philadelphia is consistently cited as one of the best walking cities in the United States. A city rich in history and innovation – Philadelphia is an attractive destination to global visitors for its interesting blend of large city sophistication and small town charm.

In addition to touring the historic and iconic landmarks of the first World Heritage City in the United States, the most popular leisure enticements in Philadelphia that overseas visitors enjoy are shopping (clothing and shoes are tax-free in Philadelphia), the city’s incredible art museums – including the world’s largest outdoor gallery of public art – and the flourishing, hip, chef-driven restaurant scene.

Easy to get to – easy to get around

International Hall photo courtesy of Philadelphia International Airport

Traveling to Philadelphia from around the world has never been easier. The city’s “central positioning on the East Coast, speedy customs and immigration arrival experience, and close proximity of the airport to the downtown (15 minute drive), make Philadelphia a perfect East Coast gateway,” according to Svetlana Yazovskikh, Executive Director of Global Tourism at the PHLCVB. “Visitors coming from long-haul destinations are able to easily package a multi-night stop in Philadelphia alongside other east coast cities.”

In the past year, Philadelphia International Airport has added new non-stop service from several European destinations including Zurich, Budapest, Prague and most recently Edinburgh, Berlin and Dubrovnik. Philadelphia offers the only non-stop flight in North America to Dubrovnik.


Global Travel. Local Boost.

In Philadelphia, overseas travelers account for 55% of all international visitation and 78% of all international visitor spending. Learn more about the impact from overseas visitors in the 2018 PHLCVB Annual Report.



The Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau (PHLCVB) is the official tourism promotion agency for the City of Philadelphia globally and the primary sales and marketing agency for the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

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