Outbound travel from China will more than double to 259 million in 2030, up from the 97.5 million trips made this year, according to a report by Euromonitor International unveiled at the World Travel Market in London.
The boom in Chinese travel will far exceed the US, which will take second place with 159 million outbound trips, followed by Germany with 138.6 million, South China Morning Post reported.
The US currently leads the world with an estimated 115.17 million outbound trips this year, followed by Germany with 110.52 million trips.
Euromonitor said that the growth in household incomes in mainland China would spur appetite for travel.
A reason that China tops the table for international is the demarcation of Hong Kong and Macau as international destinations for outbound travel from the mainland.
This year alone, 46.68 million foreign tourists visited Hong Kong, with more than three quarters (78%), or 36.63 million coming from the mainland. This represents a significant 12.7% increase climb in visitor numbers.
Mainland Chinese immigration authorities issued 133 million passports in 2017, with more than 46 million visits to Hong Kong and Macau recorded, according to official data.
China is also expected to take the top spot for international travellers by 2030, according to the same Euromonitor International report, but no specific estimates were provided. Estimates of tourist arrivals to China have put the figure at 67.3 million this year. This is expected to rise by a quarter to 88.5 million in 2023.