New Report Ranks Iceland as Friendliest Country to Tourists

Bolivia, Venezuela and Russia are the most-unfriendly nations toward vacationers

  • Share
  • Read Later
Getty Images

A new report on global tourism from the World Economic Forum (WEF) has compiled a list of which countries welcome travelers and which are not so tourist-friendly. The Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report 2013 examines 140 countries based on attractiveness and competitiveness in the travel and tourism industry.

But included in the more than 500-page report are grades for the local attitude toward tourists, the Washington Post points out. Iceland, New Zealand and Morocco took the top three spots, respectively, while Bolivia, Venezuela and Russia were found to be the most-unfriendly nations toward vacationers. Iceland ranked 16th overall in Travel and Tourism Competitive Index, while New Zealand came in 12th.

(MORE: New Study Uses Tweets to Rank America’s Happiest Cities, States)

The U.S. scored 6th overall but achieved only a middle ranking of 104 out of 140 on the tourist-friendly list. Though China and South Korea have a high concentration of tourists, the two nations tied with four others as the least welcoming, CNN points out. With very little surprise, Switzerland topped the index for the fifth year in a row, receiving high marks for ground transport, hotel and tourist-related establishments as well as excellent staff.

The list ranked nations from 0 (very unwelcome) to 7 (very welcome), using factors including tourism infrastructure such as transportation and attractions, preservation and development of natural resources, business travel appeal and safety. The report is based on data from the WEF’s Executive Opinion Survey as well as from national and international organizations including ICAO, IATA, UNWTO, WHO, UNESCO and the World Bank/International Finance Corp. See the Washington Post’s map of the countries who are more inclined to welcome tourists or check out the list below.

1. Iceland (6.8)
2. New Zealand (6.8)
3. Morocco (6.7)
4. Macedonia, FYR (6.7)
5. Austria (6.7)
6. Senegal (6.7)
7. Portugal (6.6)
8. Bosnia and Herzegovina (6.6)
9. Ireland (6.6)
10. Burkina Faso (6.6)

Most Unfriendly:
1. Bolivia (4.1)
2. Venezuela (4.5)
3. Russian Federation (5.0)
4. Kuwait (5.2)
5. Latvia (5.2)
6. Iran (5.2)
7. Pakistan (5.3)
8. Slovak Republic (5.5)
9. Bulgaria (5.5)
10. Mongolia (5.5)

MORE: Poll: The World Is Getting Happier