Overall international arrivals were up 16.6% year over year with 14,199,947 total arrivals in 2014. The 14 millionth tourist arrival was recorded at Cheongju International Airport on Dec. 29, a milestone for tourism to South Korea.
Canadian arrivals meanwhile continued their increase for a 10th consecutive year. The Canadian market showed a solid 9.8% growth in 2014, with 146,696 visitors, as Canadian are drawn to the exciting country that continues to grow in popularity.
Canada remains the third largest long-haul market for Korea, though only represents about 1% of Korean arrivals. Over 34,500 visitors have already arrived in the first quarter of 2015, up 14% over the same period last year, while almost 70% of Canadian arrivals are for tourism purposes.
The Korea Tourism Organization has reported that 40% of tourists to Korea are return visitors, supporting repeat business for Canadian travel agents.
Tourist arrivals to Korea are expected to continue through 2015 with the implementation of the Korea-Canada Free Trade Agreement (KCFTA). This new agreement will serve as the connection between the two nations to strengthen relationships and expand tourism market opportunities through mutual exchange of research.