September tourist arrivals up 3%

Saturday, 6 October 2018 00:10 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


  • Cumulative arrivals up 11.6%, to over 1.7 m
  • India, China, UK continue as top sourcing markets 
  • Asia and Pacific largest source of tourist traffic to SL with 47% of total received


The total number of tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka during September reached 149,087, posting a 2.8% year-on-year growth, while pushing cumulative arrivals to over 1.7 million, latest data released by the Government said. 

According to the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA), in September the largest source market for tourists was India, followed by China and the United Kingdom.

As at 30 September, 1,731,922 tourists had visited Sri Lanka for this year – an 11.6% growth over last year when 1,551,931 tourists had visited the country during the same period.

Asia and Pacific continued to be the largest source of tourist traffic to Sri Lanka with 47% of the total traffic received in September 2018, while Europe accounted for 43% of the total traffic, America 6%, Middle East 3% and Africa 1%.

India, China, the United Kingdom, Australia and Germany were Sri Lanka’s top five international tourist generating markets in the month of September this year. 

India was the largest source of tourist traffic to Sri Lanka with 22% of the total traffic received in September. China accounted for 13% of the total traffic, while the United Kingdom, Australia and Germany accounted for 9%, 6% and 6% respectively.

According to the Central Bank’s latest External Sector Performance report, cumulative earnings amounted to $2,160 million during the first half of 2018.

Launching a new travel campaign last month to promote the country as a year-round destination to boost arrivals during lean months, Tourism Development Minister John Amaratunga said he was hopeful that by the end of this year the country would be able to increase its numbers to 2.5 or three million.

Tourist arrivals rose 3.2% to 2.1 million last year. Tourism revenues rose by a similar percentage to an all-time peak of $ 3.63 billion.