Effects of Distance and Borders on International and Interregional Tourist Flows: A micro-gravity analysis

Author Name MORIKAWA Masayuki (Vice President, RIETI)
Creation Date/NO. April 2018 18-E-021
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Although there have been a number of studies that have applied the gravity model to migration and tourist flows, analyses covering both international and intranational movements have been scarce. This study, using unique official statistics for accommodation facilities in Japan, empirically analyzes the determinants of both international and intranational tourist flows. According to gravity model estimations, physical distance has a large, negative effect on tourist flows, but the quantitative magnitude of these effects differs little between foreign and domestic (interregional) tourists. The border effect on tourist flows is quantitatively large, and the number of tourists from foreign countries is more than 60% smaller than that from domestic ones. These results suggest that policies mitigating border barriers may contribute to a higher number of foreign tourists.

This is the English version of the Japanese Discussion Paper (18-J-012) with some additional information and changes.