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London crowned world’s most visited city by 2015 MasterCard Global Destinations Cities Index

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Today, London has been crowned the world’s most popular travel destination, according to the annual MasterCard Global Destinations Cities Index released today.

Britain’s capital will welcome 18.82million international overnight visitors who will spend a total of £13.3billion ($20.23billion) in 2015, the research shows.

The index puts London in pole position for the fifth time in seven years, beating Thai capital Bangkok into second place, and French rival Paris into third. Dubai is ranked fourth, followed by Istanbul, whose rapid rise in visitors knocks New York out of the top five this year.

The world’s top 10 cities, ranked by overnight visitor numbers are:

1.       London – 18.82million2.       Bangkok – 18.24 million

3.       Paris – 16.06 million visitors

4.       Dubai – 14.26 million visitors

5.       Istanbul – 12.56 million visitors


6.       New York – 12.27 million visitors7.       Singapore – 11.88 million visitors

8.       Kuala Lumpur – 11.12 million visitors

9.       Seoul – 10.35 million visitors

10.    Hong Kong – 8.66 million visitors


“MasterCard understands the importance of cities around the world both for travelers and those who live there,” said Ann Cairns, president of International Markets, MasterCard. “This year’s study helps us understand just how interconnected the world’s cities are and the significant role they play in connecting and empowering greater numbers of people than ever before.”

Driven by insights into travel patterns, the Global Destinations Cities Index provides a ranking of the 132 most visited cities around the world. More than just a travel tracker, the index delivers deeper understanding of how people move around the world and speaks to the importance and prominence of the world’s cities as homes, destinations and engines of growth.