Mastercard unveils top cities where people go to play, not work

Global Destination Cities Index
1 min read

Building on nearly a decade of insight into international travel trends, Mastercard recently released its Global Destination Cities Index: Play, a look at the international destinations with the highest concentration of visitors traveling for relaxation and leisure, not business.

Punta Cana leads the list of top ten cities where more than 90 percent of overnight visitor travel in 2017 was for purposes beyond business—such as vacation or family visits. The list includes several lesser-known destinations that cater to eco-tourists, history buffs, beach goers and adventure seekers.

With cultures uniquely their own but a common focus on relaxation and fun, the cities are:

Punta Cana, Dominican Republic (99.9%)
Cusco, Peru (98%)
Djerba, Tunisia (97.7%)
Riviera Maya, Mexico (97.5%)
Palma de Mallorca, Spain (97.2%)
Cancun, Mexico (96.8%)
Bali, Indonesia (96.7%)
Panama City, Panama (96.3%)
Orlando, United States (94.1%)
Phuket, Thailand (93%)

“Travel allows us to broaden our horizons by exploring new places, people and experiences,” said Francis Hondal, president of loyalty and managed services at Mastercard. “The Mastercard Global Destination Cities Index: Play shows that special cities around the world are tapping into that trend and building a brand of fun, relaxation and enjoyment for like-minded travelers.”

Mastercard is focused on helping cardholders travel the world with peace of mind through seamless planning, conveniences and connectivity at their destination and worry-free acceptance at millions of locations around the globe. Compelling travel offerings and benefits help travelers every step of their journey. More information can be found at

Additional insights from the 2018 Mastercard Global Destination Cities Index will be released later this year.