- Tourist arrivals up 6.2% in May
- India, China, the UK continue as top sourcing markets
- Asia and Pacific largest source of tourist traffic to SL with 65% of total received
By Charumini de Silva
Tourist arrivals during the first five months exceeded one million, reflecting a 14.7% growth, while May saw a 6.2% growth to 129,466 from the comparable period of last year.
According to data released by the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA), tourist arrivals in May amounted to 129,466, up 6.2% from 121,891 in the corresponding month of 2017. The cumulative arrivals of tourists in the five months rose 14.7% to 1,017,819 compared to 887,093 in the same period last year, continuing the growth momentum kick-started this year.
India continued to be the largest source market in May with 42,073 arrivals, up by 23.1%.
China came in second with 17,103, but the figure is down 7.5% compared to a year earlier. Arrivals from the UK were the third largest at 9,337, up 9.6%. Other major markets included Germany (up 8.7% to 6,906), Australia (up 28.1% to 4,873), Japan (up 48.5% to 4,229 and the US (up 24% to 4,123). France was down 0.4% to 3,721.
Asia-Pacific was the largest source of tourist traffic to Sri Lanka with 65% of the total received in May 2018. Europe accounted for 27%, America 6%, the Middle East 2 % and Africa 0.5%.
Earnings from tourism in March were estimated at $ 433 million, with cumulative earnings amounting to $ 1,313 million during the first quarter of 2018, according to data released by the Central Bank last week.