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Sri Lanka tourism booms in January

6 February 2024 03:56 am - 10     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


Chinese tourists capture the spirit of Sri Lanka’s 76th Independence Day, posing with the national flag while exploring the Independence Memorial Hall on Sunday, February 4

  • January tourist arrivals up 103% YoY
  • 200,000 milestone crossed for two consecutive months
  • However, January arrivals fall below expectations of SLTDA
  • India, Russian Federation and United Kingdom rank as top three tourist traffic generators for island nation

Sri Lanka’s tourism industry marked a resounding start to the new year by receiving more than 200,000 international visitors throughout the month of January.

In January, Sri Lanka received a total of 208,253 tourists, recording a staggering 103 percent year-on-year (YoY) growth. In January 2023, the island nation welcomed 102,545 visitors.

However, despite the industry having maintained a strong momentum of crossing the 200,000 milestone for two consecutive months, the tourist arrival rate is below the expected levels of the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA).

As per the projections of the SLTDA, in the lower case scenario, the tourist arrival expectation for January was 223,179, whereas in the upper scenario, the expectation was 241,962.

Based on the performance indicators set by the relevant authority, the island nation has missed the January target, the lower case scenario, by about 6.6 percent.

The January 2024 tourist arrival number is also lower than what was recorded in December 2023; it was 210,532.

Analysis shows that the weekly arrival average stood at about 47,000, whereas the daily arrival average was about 6,700.

India continues to remain as the largest tourist traffic generator for Sri Lanka tourism. The neighbouring giant contributed to 16 percent of the total arrivals, bringing in 34,399 visitors.

Ranking second is the Russian Federation, which accounted for 15 percent of the total arrivals, bringing in 31,159 tourists.

In the third position is the United Kingdom, which accounted for 8 percent of the arrivals, bringing in 16,665 international visitors.

While Germany and China rank as the fourth and fifth largest tourist traffic generators, the other key markets include France, Poland, Australia and the United States.

  Comments - 10

  • Nick Hart Tuesday, 06 February 2024 09:17 AM

    It would be interesting to know what ‘class’ of tourists and the amount of Forex inflows they generate…

    Mk Tuesday, 06 February 2024 04:45 PM

    If is interesting, go and find the data and educate yourself.

    tourist Tuesday, 06 February 2024 05:38 PM

    It’s interesting to know which "class" you belong to because it’s funny to read such comments from a beggar. You should be welcome to ANY tourists and not discuss the contents of their wallet

    D P P Prasad Tuesday, 06 February 2024 09:39 AM

    The tourist board should join hands with both forest department as well as the department of wildlife in order to enhance the tourism industry. Besides Srilanka has real potential areas which are not identified so far. The beautiful hill tops water falls and certain beaches are among them. Those are considered as the mesmerising tourist destinations.

    Dee Tuesday, 06 February 2024 09:44 AM

    As per previous comments on the subject of increased tourism- these figures will be of ex srilankans who are visiting relatives! If that’s so, they certainly have changed colors!

    No using SL Passport is a Tourist Tuesday, 06 February 2024 12:51 PM

    If they are no longer holding or using SL passport, they are classified as tourist correct. Remember, they don’t reside or work in SL

    Mk Tuesday, 06 February 2024 04:47 PM

    The tourism arrivals are not based on all airport arrivals. They are based on actual tourists visiting. Also there is no large inflow of sri lankans visiting compared to the tourist arrivals.

    Allow Tourist Longer Stays Tuesday, 06 February 2024 09:58 AM

    Make it easier for tourist especially with Sri Lankan origin to stay longer per visit (maybe 6months to 1 year). They will bring the much needed forex

    Waco Tuesday, 06 February 2024 10:34 AM

    Minister of tourism deserve a big commission, for his hard work.

    Ruwan Tuesday, 06 February 2024 01:52 PM

    I read somewhere that tourist arrivals for January even exceeded that of Maldives.

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