New research released at the World Travel Market, the leading global event for the travel industry, today (November 7, 2012) revealed that the global potential value of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) leisure travel market is set to reach a record US$181 billion in 2013.

The findings are based on the LGBT2020 research program from leading global LGBT marketing specialist Out Now Global which measures consumer spend, purchasing habits and brand preferences across 22 countries.

The new data shows a 9.7 percent year-on-year growth in the LGBT travel market, up from US$165 billion in 2012, despite the on-going volatile economic climate, uneven recovery from the global financial crisis, and the ongoing Eurozone crisis.

The USA market tops the league at US$52.3 billion, followed by Brazil (US$22.9 billion) and Japan (US$18.5 billion). Europe is a more important LGBT market than the USA with the total value of the eight most important markets in Europe being significantly larger than the US market (US$58.3 billion) and Latin America’s most important three markets account for an additional US$36.0 billion).

For the total league table of the most important LGBT tourism markets worldwide visit Out Now’s Press Centre report online –

Announcing the figures, Out Now Global CEO Ian Johnson said: “A number of different factors continue to drive growth in this sector. Many LGBT people have grown up experiencing things a bit tougher than most, so a difficult economy, and working to keep things moving in tough times, including our travel plans, is part of the modus operandi for many of us.

“Like many people, LGBT consumers are finding the cost of living tough and some are working two or more jobs to keep things together, but with dramatically fewer households with children, travel remains a viable option for more LGBT travelers and one that is still within their household budget.

“The LGBT community’s resilience is matched by an expansion of product options which are tailored to meet LGBT needs. Today, there are more and more destinations, hotels and tour operators all catering for the particular needs of our market and that makes travel a very desirable leisure pursuit for all those who can afford it.”

Turkey and Israel are added to the LGBT 2020 survey for the first time this year. The new Turkey research data shows that this new market accounts for more than US$5.1 billion in annual tourism spending. Israel adds another US$1.1 billion to the annual value of LGBT tourism spending globally.

“Having identified a remarkably resilient potential customer base for 2013, now is the time for industry operators to really step up a gear and work to strengthen their market position,” said Ian Johnson, “To facilitate this process in a cost effective and genuine way, Out Now has developed a suite of new services to help the industry make that important step change.”

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