What Does Tourism Do in Civ 5?

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Tourism is your main asset when vying for a Cultural Victory. In this arena, think of tourism as the weapon and culture as the shield.

Every turn, your tourism spreads to all other civilizations (civ) that you’ve already met.

You’ll win once your accrued tourism in every civ surpasses their culture stat.


Sources of Tourism


#1: Great Works

You acquire Great Works by:

  • Using cultural Great People (Writers, Artists, and Musicians)
  • Excavating antiquity sites with an archaeologist

Each one generates +2 tourism regardless of their type.

They can only be created if you have an empty Great Work slot. These are provided by cultural buildings and Wonders:

Building Slots Great Work Type
Royal Library (Assyria) 1 Writing
Amphitheater 1 Writing
Cathedral 1 Art & Artifact
Museum 2 Art & Artifact
Opera House 1 Music
Broadcast Tower 1 Music
Wonder Slots Great Work Type
National Epic 1 Writing
Heroic Epic 1 Writing
Great Library 2 Writing
Oxford University 2 Writing
Globe Theatre 2 Writing
Palace 1 Art & Artifact
Parthenon 1 Art & Artifact
Sistine Chapel 2 Art & Artifact
Uffizi 3 Art & Artifact
Hermitage 3 Art & Artifact
Louvre 4 Art & Artifact
Broadway 3 Music
Sydney Opera House 2 Music
Theme Bonus

Buildings and Wonders with multiple Great Work slots have a “theming bonus”.

Each of them has a preferred theme for their exhibits. You can get extra tourism if you follow their preferences. The exact amount depends on the building.

You can double this bonus if you completely unlock the Aesthetics social policy tree.

To check a building’s theme:

Step 1: Open the “Your Culture” tab in the Culture Overview

Step 2: Hover over the number beside the Great Work slots

This Theme Requires Great Works from the Same Era and Civ / Civilization V
This Theme Requires Great Works from the Same Era and Civ
Swap Great Works

You can trade Great Works with another civ in the Culture Overview. This is your main method of getting the Great Works needed to complete a theme.

Swapping a Japanese Renaissance Writing for an Arabian Medieval Writing / Civilization V
Swapping a Japanese Renaissance Writing for an Arabian Medieval Writing

Here’s the step-by-step process of how to trade Great Works:

  1. Switch to the “Swap Great Works” tab
  2. Select your Great Work that you want to give away
  3. Choose another civ’s Great Work
  4. Confirm the swap

#2: Concert Tours

Great Musicians can approach foreign cities and conduct concert tours.

They’ll be used up, but you’ll generate a massive one-time tourism boost in the affected civ.

This is useful against civs who can create culture quicker than you can accumulate tourism.

In fact, it might be the only way to reach Influential status with them.


Tourism Modifiers


#1: City Tourism

You can increase a city’s tourism output by having these buildings:

Building City Tourism Bonus
Hotel +50%
Airport +50%
National Visitor Center +100%

It’s best to move your Great Works to one city and construct these buildings there.

Once you research The Internet, all of your cities will have their tourism output doubled.


#2: Diplomacy

You can accelerate the spread of tourism to other civs with these modifiers:

  • +25% with a common trade route
  • +25% with open border
  • +25% if you share the same religion

These can be increased by +15% by an Aesthetics social policy.

When ideologies come into play, two more modifiers will become active:

  • -34% from having different ideologies
  • +34% if you have a diplomat in the target civ

Note: A diplomat only negates the negative modifier of opposing ideologies. They don’t provide any benefits with civs that share your ideology.


#3: Ideological Tenets

The three ideologies each have their own way of handling tourism:

Ideology Tenet Effect Tenet Level
Freedom Media Culture +34% tourism output of cities with a Broadcast Tower 3
Order Cultural Revolution +34% tourism spread to other Order civs 2
Order Dictatorship of the Proletariat +34% tourism spread to civs with less happiness 3
Autocracy Futurism +250 tourism spread to all civs when a Great Writer, Artist, or Musician is born. 2
Autocracy Cult of Personality +50% tourism spread to civs fighting a common enemy 3

How Tourism Levels Work

When your accrued tourism in another civ reaches a certain percent of their culture, you’ll move up an influence level.

There are seven influence levels in Civ V.

You only have to reach “Influential” with all other civs to win.

Level Accrued Tourism
Unknown 0–9%
Exotic 10–29%
Familiar 30–59%
Popular 60–99%
Influential 100–199%
Dominant 200%
The Culture Overview displays your Influence levels / Civilization V
The Culture Overview displays your Influence levels
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Louie Nelson Zafico

As a frustrated otter who dreams of getting published, Louie instead wastes his life cuddling his cats. He spent his childhood playing Suikoden, grew up with Total War, and matured (somewhat) with EU4. He hopes to someday find a geopolitical JRPG with the 4X systems of a Paradox game.