South Koreans’ overseas spending reached an all-time high in the third quarter of the year, driven by a large increase in the number of people traveling abroad, data from the central bank showed on Sunday.
South Koreans spent a total of $6.59 billion in the July-September period in overseas countries, up 21.7 percent from the previous quarter and 24 percent from a year earlier, according to the data compiled by the Bank of Korea.
The figure did not include spending for studying overseas.
The sharp rise was mainly due to an increase in travelers to other countries. During the third quarter of the year, a total of 6.05 million South Koreans went abroad, up 19.4 percent from the previous quarter, with their average spending per person reaching $1,089, according to the data from the Korea Tourism Organization.
In contrast, spending by foreign visitors in South Korea dropped 10.1 percent on-quarter to reach $4.12 billion in the third quarter.
From a year earlier, spending by non-residents in the country rose 28.7 percent, however, as foreigners delayed planned trips to Korea in the wake of the outbreak of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome last year.
A total of 4.89 million foreigners visited the country during the third quarter, up 8.3 percent from the previous quarter, but their per-person spending here dropped to $843 from $1,016 over the cited period.
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