Elizabeth Becker is an award winning author and former correspondent for The New York Times who reported from Europe, Asia, and South America. As the Senior Foreign Editor at National Public Radio, she oversaw all the network's foreign bureaus and their reporting. She has won awards from the Robert Kennedy Book Awards, Overseas Press Club, and DuPont-Columbia and was part of the New York Times staff that won the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for public service.
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Elizabeth Becker discusses how the tourism industry has expanded into almost every aspect of life imaginable, one of the topics explored in Overbooked:
How is the tourism industry "exploding"?
While no one was looking, tourism has become one of the leading businesses in the world (nearly $7 trillion a year) and the world's biggest employer (one out of 12 people). In just 25 years, thanks to cutting edge technologies and open borders following the end of the Cold War, the number of international tourists has exploded to over one billion. In 1995 it was half of that. Rich and poor countries are relying on tourism to build their economies. It's becoming as important in many ways as the finance or energy industries.
What are those one billion tourists doing?
I spent five years traveling to research this book. And I tell the stories of those global adventures to show the industry inside out. What surprised me was how everything has been fashioned into a tourist opportunity: medical tourism is especially popular with Americans who can't afford insurance. In Malaysia the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Tourism made a package for an operation and then recuperation on a beach; all for a fraction of ...
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