According to the state-operated Immigration and Checkpoints Agency, about five million South Koreans headed to overseas countries in the first quarter of 2023, after almost all COVID-19 travel regulations were lifted in most countries. The number of people visiting foreign countries is expected to increase in the second and third quarters, as many working people go on summer vacation trips in June, July, and August.
Data released by Hana Tour, one of the major travel agencies in South Korea, on June 12 showed that 19.9 percent of overseas travelers who plan to fly out in July and August are headed to Viet Nam. 18.2 percent will visit Japan while 17.6 percent will be traveling to Europe. 13.3 percent chose China as their summer vacation destination while 6.4 percent will be flying to Thailand.
Hana Tour analyzed that the rate of people heading to overseas travel destinations is going through a normalization process after the international COVID-19 lockdown that grounded many businesspeople and travelers for more than two years. The travel agency predicted that most vacation flights will be flying out between July 28 and 30, just after elementary schools close for the summer holidays.
The travel agency emphasized that the form of traveling has also changed after the pandemic. While many travelers visited foreign countries in the form of independent trips or group tours of more than 20 people before the pandemic, two-people groups or groups that consist of a handful of family members or friends are the main traveler groups in 2023.
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