Sri Lanka targets Saudi Arabia tourism boost as numbers increase from Australia and New Zealand
Sri Lanka is targeting Saudi Arabia with a major tourism promotion drive as latest figures show a 24 percent increase in visitors in March compared with last year.
TradeArabia reports that a recent two-day Riyadh roadshow at the Holiday Inn Corniche “has been a resounding success, with excellent attendance with the right partners”.
In 2017, 78,873 tourists arrived from from the Middle East region, 35,481 of which were from Saudi, which is served by 28 direct flight services a week.
This suggests that “the potential to grow and develop the market further, especially as travellers from the country on average have one of the highest travel spends in the world”.
“This will result in not only return dividends for Sri Lanka’s tourism and hospitality industries, but also for the retail industry.”
Says Anjantha Ratnayake, assistant director, Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau: “Sri Lanka has much to offer visitors from Saudi Arabia with our distinctive, adventure-packed, eco-friendly, family-focused experiences and offerings.
Meanwhile, ColomboPage reports that “the number of visitors to Sri Lanka from Australia and New Zealand has surged following SriLankan Airlines’ commencement of daily direct services between Melbourne and Colombo.”
Latest statistics compiled by the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority show show Australia is now firmly among the top ten source markets for visitors to Sri Lanka.
SriLankan launched its services to Melbourne in October 2017, and has boosted its codeshare agreement with Qantas to link Melbourne with Adelaide, Brisbane and Sydney, and also New Zealand’s largest city Auckland.