Sri Lanka draws 111,938 tourists in September 2023
Sri Lanka reached the 100,000 tourist arrival mark in September, marking the eighth month of 2023 this milestone was achieved. However, with the arrivals totaling 111,938, the island nation managed to realise only 93 percent of the target (120,201) set by the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA), for the month of September. Compared to the previous month i.e. August 2023, tourist visits in September, decreased by 17.9%.
India emerged once again as the leading tourist-generating market with 30,063 visitors (27% of total arrivals), followed by China’s 8,445 (8%), the UK’s 7,504 visitors (7%), Germany with 7,231 (6%), and Russian with 7,231 (6%). Making up the bottom half of the Island’s top 10 were the Australians, Israelis, Dutch, French and Canadians visitors, in that order.
Considering the January-September period, foreign tourist arrivals recorded a total 1,016,256, and in terms of year-to-date arrivals, India led the pack with 200,310 tourists, followed by Russia with 132,300 and the UK with 90,843.
Estimated tourism revenues for September was $152.2 million, up from $40.5 million in the same month a year earlier. The revenues for the first nine month were $1,456.7 million, 66.8% up from $873.1 million in the same period in 2022. The tourism revenue numbers are based on a survey conducted by the tourism promotion office and released by the central bank.
While there is cautious optimism by the industry that continued recovery in the forthcoming winter season will fulfill the country’s aspiration to welcome 1.55 million visitors by year’s end, the Chairman of Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority Priyantha Fernando expressed his confidence of reaching 2023’s targeted goal, saying “Looking at the targets we had set for 2023, we are ahead of targets.”
Hospitality Sri Lanka