Not so long ago, you could go to an airport and find it deserted. This is no longer the case, especially in Europe and Asia, where one only rarely enters airport terminals (as well as bus and railway stations) that are not full to capacity. This impression is substantiated by new statistical evidence on the impetuous rise in the international movements of people. Between 2011 and 2016 alone, individual cross-border travels on planet Earth increased by 25 per cent. In absolute numbers, an estimated 2.9 billion international trips occurred worldwide in 2016 by air, land or water transportation — around 600 million more than five years earlier.
This estimate stems from a novel dataset created by the Global Mobilities Project (GMP) at the EUI’s Migration Policy Centre (MPC), in collaboration with the Knowledge Centre on Migration and Demography (KCMD) of the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre: the Global Transnational Mobility Dataset. Interested readers are invited to explore the data on the KCMD’s Dynamic Data Hub, a free tool that allows users to delve into the travel relations between countries globally on an interactive world map. You can also request access to the data itself by sending an email to GMPdataset@eui.eu and read more about the data specificities and limitations in a recent EUI working paper (Recchi, E., Deutschmann, E., Vespe, M. 2019. Estimating Transnational Human Mobility on a Global Scale, EUI RSCAS Working Paper – MPC Series 2019/30. Fiesole: European University Institute) and MPC Blog (Recchi, E., E. Deutschmann, Global Human Mobility Rapidly Increasing, New Open-Access Dataset Shows, MPC Blog (30/04/2019).