Over 10,000 tourists on single day, arrivals top 200,000 for third consecutive month

Thursday, 29 February 2024 03:47 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

  • First 27 days of February welcomes 204,484 tourists, pushing YTD to over 400,000 
  • Despite consistent upward trend in arrivals, month fell short of set target 238,614
  • February arrivals up 90% YoY, but still 13% lower compared to benchmark year of 2018 
  • Russia, India, UK, Germany, China, emerge top source markets 
  • Stakeholders optimistic momentum will continue with ongoing ‘You’ll come back for more’ global campaign

Sri Lanka tourism welcomed over 10,000 tourists in a single day on 24 February marking the highest number of daily arrivals after COVID-19, whilst registering over 200,000 visitors during the month.

The country saw over 200,000 tourists for three consecutive months, marking a robust uptick in arrivals after four years.

During the first 27 days of February, Sri Lanka welcomed a total of 204,484 tourists, propelling the year-to-date (YTD) arrivals to 412,737. This achievement exceeds the total number recorded for the entire month of February in 2023 which stood at 107,639. 

February also witnessed a consistent upward trend, in the first three weeks with over 52,000 tourists and peaking at 55,537 in the third week. However, February arrivals could not achieve the ambitious monthly target of 238,614. 

The February tourist arrivals are an increase of 90% year-on-year (YoY). Nevertheless, the performance is still 13% lower compared to the 235,618 in the benchmark year 2018. 

Russia led February arrivals with 14% as the top tourist source market for Sri Lanka with 29,728 tourists closely followed by India with 27,744, the UK with 19,601, Germany with 15,207 and China with 14,187. In addition, tourists were also received from countries such as France, Poland, Australia, the US and the Netherlands.

India maintains its position as the top tourist source market for Sri Lanka YTD, with a cumulative total of 62,143 arrivals, followed by Russia with 60,887 the UK with 36,266, Germany with 28,800 and China with 25,698 arrivals.

The stakeholders hoped that the momentum would continue with the ongoing ‘You’ll come back for more’ global campaign widely promoted among major source markets of Sri Lanka Tourism.

For 2024, Sri Lanka Tourism has set an ambitious target to welcome 2.3 million tourists and earn over $ 4.5 billion.