80+ Eye-Popping Travel Facts and Stats You Should Know [2022]

surprising travel statistics and facts

Here’s the thing:

Like most of us, you’re probably suffering from a bad case of itchy feet. All thanks to the border closures, constantly-changing travel restrictions, and quarantines.

But—don’t despair.

At Passport Photo Online, we’ve compiled an exhaustive list of 80+ fun travel statistics and facts to help indulge your travel cravings.

Buckle in.

List of Surprising Travel Statistics and Facts

  1. Top 10 Fun Travel Statistics and Facts
  2. General Fun Travel Stats and Facts to Know in 2022
  3. Social Media, Smartphones, Airbnb, and Work vs. Travel
  4. Air Travel: Trivia Facts and Statistics
  5. Surprising Travel Facts: FAQ

Top 10 Fun Travel Statistics and Facts

top 10 fun travel statistics and facts
  1. The most visited countries in the world are France (89.4M), Spain (82.7M), and the US (79.6M).
  2. Lower air pressure and dryness in a plane cabin reduce the sensitivity of your taste buds to sweet and salty foods by ~30%, which is why food tastes different when flying.
  3. It’s still 2014 in Ethiopia due to alternate calculations in determining the annunciation date of Jesus’ birth.
  4. Bulgarians shake their heads from side to side to mean “yes” and nod up and down to say “no.”
  5. The shortest scheduled passenger flight is the Loganair Westray to Papa Westray route in Orkney, Scotland, which lasts around one and a half minutes. The record for the fastest flight is 53 seconds.
  6. The world’s longest town name is Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch. It sits on the Welsh island of Anglesey, across the Menai Strait from the city of Bangor.
  7. Monaco is smaller than Central Park in New York. Yet, nearly one in three people who live there is a millionaire.
  8. The island of Yap uses rocks as currency.
  9. Travelers gain an average of ~0.6 pounds (~0.3 kg) during a 1–3 week holiday.
  10. About 40% of Generation Y choose holiday destinations based on how Instagrammable the pictures will turn out.

General Fun Travel Stats and Facts to Know in 2022

  • Italy has a free, 24/7 wine fountain in the small town of Ortona, Abruzzo.
  • Of the 1.42M lakes on planet Earth, Canada is home to 62% of them.
  • Roughly 600 people help run and maintain the Eiffel Tower every day. 
  • Jet lag is worse after traveling east than west. That’s likely due to greater difficulty of advancing rather than delaying the body’s internal clock.
  • While the official languages of Papua New Guinea are Hiri Motu, Tok Pisin, and English, the nation is considered the most linguistically diverse, with nearly 820 languages.
  • France covers more time zones than any country (12), followed by Russia (11), the United States (11), and Antarctica (9).
  • Indonesia comprises over 17,500 islands with a total coastline of 50,549 miles (81,350 km).
  • Libya has the highest percentage of deserts (99%).
  • The least visited country in the world is Tuvalu, located halfway between Australia and Hawaii.
  • About 27% of the Netherlands is below sea level. 
  • Australia is the only country in the world that occupies a whole continent.
  • Norway and Sweden have the most islands globally, mainly in the Arctic.
  • Greenland is the largest island on the planet.
  • Canada has the longest coastline globally, bordering three oceans with its thousands of islands.
  • Mongolia has the lowest population density of around 4.4 people per square mile (~1.7 people/sq km).
  • There are roughly 6,500 languages in the world today. Yet, nearly 97% of the population speaks just 4% of them.
there are roughly 6,500 languages in the world today. yet, nearly 97% of the population speaks just 4% of them
  • The world’s shortest place name is the Norwegian town of Å (pronounced “aw”).
  • Every coin thrown into Rome’s Trevi Fountain is collected every day and donated to charity.
  • The time in China follows a single standard time offset of UTC+08:00, even though the country spans almost five geographical time zones.
  • The White Mountains of California is home to Methuselah, a 4,853-year-old tree.
  • Australia has over 10,000 beaches. It’d take 27 years to visit a new one every day.
  • The Northern Hemisphere is home to ~6.4B people (around 87% of the Earth’s population).
  • Known as the “City of Bridges,” Pittsburgh boasts 446 bridges—more than any other city, including Venice.
  • Iceland is a mosquito-free country.
  • France has the highest number of Michelin-starred restaurants.
  • The most visited city in the world is Hong Kong (29M+ visitors yearly), followed by Bangkok (24M+) and London (19M+).
  • Finland is ranked the happiest country in the world.
  • Malaysia boasts the world’s largest hotel, the First World Hotel, with a whopping 7,351 rooms.
  • Only 11% of Americans have been to 10 countries or more.
  • Louvre is the most visited museum globally, followed by Beijing’s National Museum of China and Tate Modern in London.
  • There used to be a town named Fucking in Austria, whose residents were known as The Fuckingers. The town’s name has recently been changed to Fugging.
  • The world’s longest road is the Pan-American highway, with a length of 30,000 miles (48,280 km), which stretches from Canada to South America.
  • The global revenue of the travel industry dropped by 42% in 2020 due to coronavirus.
the global revenue of the travel industry dropped by 42% in 2020 due to coronavirus
  • The US recorded a tourism revenue loss of ~$147B between January and October 2020.
  • The United States’ Magic Kingdom (Walt Disney World) was visited by ~7M people in 2020, becoming the most visited amusement park globally.
  • New York is the leading city destination in America regarding international arrivals welcoming ~5.42M foreign visitors every year.

Social Media, Smartphones, Airbnb, and Work vs. Travel

  • Roughly 89% of US travelers checked social media during their most recent holiday.
roughly 89% of us travelers checked social media during their most recent holiday
  • A full 55% of vacationers spend between 30 and 120 minutes daily on social media sites.
  • Most Americans (71%) check their smartphones 32–80 times per day on average when traveling—10% admit they take a peek ~160 times every day.
  • A little over 50% of travelers decided to visit a destination after seeing its images and/or videos from friends, family, or peers on social media.
  • About 60% of Americans post photos on social media while away. In the case of Millenials, that number shoots up to 97%.
  • Friends’ photos on Facebook impact over 50% of users’ travel plans.
  • 1M+ travel-related hashtags are searched on Instagram weekly.
  • About 70% of US travelers update their Facebook status while on vacation.
  • In 2015, Justin Bieber shot a music video for “I’ll Show You” at the Fjadrárgljúfur canyon in Iceland. Fast forward a few years, tourism to the once-sleepy town almost doubled.
  • Instagram boasts 300M+ posts with the word “travel” in them.
Instagram has 300M+ posts with the word “travel” in them
  • Airbnb has 5.6M+ listings worldwide.
  • With a market cap of ~$104.25B, Airbnb ranks first among the top online travel companies.
  • The number of US travelers who use Airbnb will likely reach 45.6M by 2022.
  • Every second, roughly six guests check into Airbnb rentals.
  • Airbnb is active in ~98% of the world. Exceptions are North Korea, Syria, Iran, and Sudan.
Airbnb is active in ~98% of the world. Exceptions are North Korea, Syria, Iran, and Sudan
  • About 59% of travelers are ready to spend extra to make their trip more sustainable.
  • A full 61% of people say the COVID-19 pandemic encouraged them to travel more sustainably in the future.
  • Nearly 36% of vacationers become angry when their companion constantly takes photos or selfies.
  • About 75% of American travelers consider their cell phones the number one travel accessory.
  • Six out of 10 travelers say using smartphones for work made them unable to relax and recharge their batteries.
  • Nearly 60% of US working professionals say their managers expect them to stay connected while on vacation.
  • Just over half of workers (55%) feel they should respond to work emails while away, even if the company doesn’t require it.
  • Around 66% of employees in America wish they’d been unreachable from work during their most recent holiday.
  • Nearly 69% are less likely to quit after taking a workation.
  • The US is the only developed country in the world without a single legally required paid vacation day. In contrast, every EU country has at least four work weeks of paid vacation.

Air Travel: Trivia Facts and Statistics

  • During a 10-hour flight, men can lose ~66 ounces of water (~2 liters) and women ~54 ounces (~1.6 liters).
  • Boeing 747 uses around one gallon of fuel (4 liters) every second. Throughout a 10-hour flight, it might burn 36,000 gallons (150,000 liters).
  • During a routine flight, the temperature outside the plane ranges from -40°F to -70°F (-40C to -56C).
  • There are ~61,000 people in the airspace above the United States at any given moment.
there are ~61,000 people in the airspace above the united states at any given moment
  • Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport is the world’s busiest airport located in Baiyun-Huadu, Guangzhou, Guangdong.
  • The longest nonstop commercial flight is from Los Angeles to Singapore (serviced by United Airlines), scheduled at 17 hours and 50 minutes.
  • Qatar Airlines’ Auckland to Doha route is the longest flight globally by distance, at 9,032 miles (14,535 km).
  • The most expensive airport taxis worldwide are in Hiroshima and Oita airports in Japan, with fees reaching $165.
  • Pilots and co-pilots are advised not to eat the same food when on duty. The rationale being if something is wrong with the meal, the unaffected pilot could always take over.

Surprising Travel Facts: FAQ

What are the most visited countries in the world?

The most visited countries in the world are France (89.4M), Spain (82.7M), and the US (79.6M). Each country has a rich history and boasts fantastic scenery, from stunning beaches to breathtaking mountains.

How long is the world’s shortest flight?

The shortest scheduled passenger flight is the Loganair Westray to Papa Westray route in Orkney, Scotland, which lasts around one and a half minutes. The record for the fastest flight is 53 seconds.

What country has the most time zones? 

France covers more time zones than any country: 12. It’s followed by Russia (11), the United States (11), and Antarctica (9).

How many languages are there in the world in 2022?

There are roughly 6,500 languages in the world today. Yet, ~97% of the population speaks just 4% of them.

What’s the most visited city in the world in 2022?

Hong Kong is the most visited city in the world, welcoming 29M+ tourists yearly. It’s followed by Bangkok (24M+) and London (19M+).

What’s the happiest country in the world in 2022?

Finland is ranked the happiest country in the world. It’s attained consistently high rankings in the top education systems, although Finland is occasionally surpassed by countries such as Singapore, South Korea, and Japan.

How many travelers use Airbnb in 2022?

The number of US travelers who use Airbnb will likely reach 45.6M by 2022. This means one in four Americans would have used the platform at least once by 2022.

Do tourists want to be sustainable in 2022?

About 59% of travelers are ready to spend extra to make their trip more sustainable. This is good news for the planet and businesses that offer sustainable travel options.

What is the world’s longest flight in 2022?

The longest nonstop commercial flight is from Los Angeles to Singapore. It’s serviced by United Airlines and lasts 17 hours and 50 minutes.

Stacking It All Up

There you have it.

A comprehensive list of surprising travel statistics and facts you can use to spice up your knowledge.

Let us know in the comments if there are any other unusual travel statistics you’d like to see.

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