The influence of cinema and TV on tourism

9 min reading time

Published on 25/03/24 - Updated on 25/03/24

Set jetting

Film tourism, the practice of choosing travel destinations based on the filming locations of movies and TV shows, is gaining popularity and influencing commercial tourist offers. What impact of films and fiction have on tourists' destination choices?

In France, a study by IPSOS for the CNC (Centre National du Cinema): 

Foreign tourists in Paris, exhibit varying stay durations and spending patterns based on nationality, with Chinese and Americans staying longer and spending more. Exposure to French fiction, especially through streaming services like SVOD, is widespread among foreign tourists, with approximately 80% expressing a desire to visit France. SVOD platforms play a significant role in this influence.  

French people are highly influenced by films and series, with 96% having seen at least one French creation. Exposure to these productions, sparks interest in the regions where they were filmed, with two-thirds expressing a desire to visit these locations. One in four French respondents decides to visit a filming location after watching a specific film or series, influenced by factors such as age, socioeconomic status and location.  

French tourists show strong attachment to the regions they visit, with 80% having seen films or series filmed in the region. This exposure contributes to a positive image of the regions but has a limited impact on triggering actual stays. Foreign tourists, though less exposed to regional productions, consider them positively, with SVOD platforms providing newfound visibility to French works. Films and series shot in the regions have a more significant impact on foreign tourists in terms of image and incentive to visit compared to French tourists. unveils stays from dark drama TV series 

According to, which is probably referring to The White Lotus, the series is set to return in 2025. The upcoming season moves to Thailand, following previous settings in Hawaii and Sicily. With 57% of travelers seeking 'main character energy' in 2024, reveals the real-life resorts featured in the series, showcasing their amenities. 

  • Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui – Koh Samui, Thailand: 

Perched on Koh Samui's northwestern tip, this resort offers villas with private pools and views of the Gulf of Thailand. Guests can enjoy spa treatments, beachside cocktails, and service. 

  • Anantara Mai Khao Phuket Villas – Phuket, Thailand: 

Located on Phuket's secluded northwest coast, this retreat features villas surrounding a blue lagoon. Each villa offers a private plunge pool, with staff delivering breakfast by boat. The resort hosts beachside feasts and entertainment for guests. 

  • Four Seasons Maui at Wailea – Wailea, Maui, Hawaii, United States: 

Situated in Wailea overlooking the Pacific Ocean, this resort boasts pools, suites, and dining options. Guests can enjoy nightly hula shows and complimentary amenities. 

  • San Domenico Palace, Taormina, A Four Seasons Hotel – Taormina, Sicily: 

This resort offers historic charm and breathtaking views of the Ionian Sea. With elegant accommodations and world-class dining, guests can immerse themselves in Sicily's rich culture and history. 

The Set-Jetting Forecast: Anticipated Travel Destinations in 2024 

The phenomenon of "Set-Jetting," where travelers are drawn to destinations featured in TV shows and movies, has become a powerful trend. Expedia Group identified this trend as a significant force in travel, with TV shows and movies now surpassing the influence of social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok.  

According to Expedia, TV shows and movies have become major influencers of travel plans, with over 50% of travelers stating that these productions inspire their destination choices. The landscapes and outdoor locations depicted in these shows generate the most interest, surpassing the impact of social media platforms. 

Some Examples: 

  • The locations featured in HBO's "The White Lotus" saw a 300% spike in searches, with Thailand speculated as the setting for season three. 

  • Romania gains attention in Netflix's gory take on "The Addams Family," where it stands in for Vermont, offering travelers a chance to explore spectacular architecture and indulge in food and wine-focused day trips. 

  • Netflix's "Emily in Paris" fuels a more than 200% spike in interest in the French capital, inspiring viewers to explore the city's romantic spots and venture to the French Riviera. 

  • England has become a sought-after destination due to the popularity of Netflix hits "Bridgerton" and "The Crown," encouraging travelers to explore London, Bath, and Windsor. 

  • South Korea gained attention with the success of the surreal Netflix series "Squid Game," prompting travelers to explore Seoul and its cultural highlights. 

  • Greece remains a popular choice, featuring in Netflix's "The Glass Onion" and the upcoming spy action-comedy "Argylle,". 

“Here’s the history on this trend: Expedia noticed searches peaking for destinations featured on shows, even imaginary destinations like Schitt’s Creek,” “We found it hard to believe people were actually booking trips to places they saw on a show. We commissioned research and sure enough, movies and streaming shows are now the top inspiration for travel.” - Melanie Fish, chief trend tracker for Expedia Brands. 

Atout France and Netflix Partnership: 

Netflix and Atout France have joined forces to enhance France's cultural and tourist influence. According to the site Atout France, a study that has been conducted by the Basis research institute has highlighted the significant impact of Netflix films and series on France's attractiveness, leading to a strategic collaboration to promote the country's appeal. Moreover, according to the same study, viewers exposed to French programs on Netflix are three times more likely to consider France as their top travel destination. 

While Netflix subscribers express increased interest in exploring French culture, with specific preferences for visiting cultural sites (63%), learning about culinary specialties (61%), and exploring French cities from the series (58%). Furthermore, nearly 50% of those who watched French series or films on Netflix report having a more positive image of the country. 

The partnership led to the launch of the "We haven't finished imagining France" advertising campaign. Furthermore, a digital travel guide on offers thematic routes, a personalized guide generator, and highlights over 70 locations tied to important films and series. 

Campaign and Tourist Guide: 

During the last years, there have been some campaigns in France to boost its attractiveness on a global level. One of them is the “Make it iconic. Choose France” communication campaign. On that campaign many personalities are being highlighted serving that purpose. But it needs to be noted that even though these personalities come from different backgrounds and have different careers, none of them has a cinema background. Which would be an interesting approach, keeping in mind that there are many internationally renowned French movie stars.  


Exploring Iconic Movie Locations: Game of Thrones in Northern Ireland vs. Lord of the Rings in New Zealand 

Fans of epic fantasy sagas are often drawn to the real-world locations that bring their favorite stories to life. In this comparison, we delve into the breathtaking landscapes and historic sites featured in two beloved franchises: Game of Thrones in Northern Ireland and Lord of the Rings in New Zealand. 

Northern Ireland and New Zealand have served as captivating backdrops for two beloved fantasy franchises. Northern Ireland's ancient forests, such as Tollymore Forest Park, and historic landmarks like Shane's Castle, provided settings for Game of Thrones, while New Zealand's diverse landscapes, including the Hobbiton™ Movie Set and Wellington's Kaitoke Regional Park, brought Middle‑earth™ to life in The Lord of the Rings trilogy. 

Both regions offer unique opportunities for exploration and appreciation of nature, inviting visitors to immerse themselves in the fantastic worlds depicted on screen. 

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