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SLTPB Chairman ups 2023 arrivals goal, despite October's target falling short by 25%

Notwithstanding the disappointment of not achieving its monthly target of 147,789 for October 2023, (signaling the 3rd consecutive month for failing to its reach monthly arrivals target), Sri Lanka Tourism officials last week expressed optimism on achieving 1.55 million tourist arrivals by year-end.


However, as reported in the Daily News of 1st November, the Chairman of Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB), claims that they have upgraded the arrival target from 1,5 million to 1.7 million arrivals, since they expect over 200,000 to 250,000 arrivals in the months of November and December, respectively. He went on to add that the free-visa on arrival policy will boost the country’s target by 10%.


October 2023 total arrivals were 109,999 as against the set monthly target of 147,789. The 37,790 arrivals shortfall is supposedly due to the drop in visitors, especially from India owing to the ongoing Cricket World Cup. (One would think however, that this event outcome would have been ‘factored in’ when drawing up the month’s target).


India retained its position as the single biggest source market in October as well as YTD, whilst, Russia and the UK followed closely.


Year-to-date (YTD), the total arrivals to the country is over 1.12 million, which compared to the benchmark year of 2018, still  remains 40% down.


According to the latest data released by the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA), tourist arrivals from India in the first 10 months is at 228,532, Russia 142,929 and UK 99,297, respectively.


Russia has made a strong comeback in October, in sync with the onset of the winter season and the resumption of direct charter flights, while the UK has remained in its position. However, there was a surprising decline in arrivals from China despite available air connectivity.


Hospitality Sri Lanka



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