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Tourist arrivals expected to surpass 100k, despite falling short of target

May 27, Colombo (LNW): Tourist arrivals in Sri Lanka are anticipated to surpass 100,000 for May, though they are expected to fall short of the projected target of 120,934 to 131,112 visitors, reports claim.

The first three weeks of May (from 1st to 21st) saw a modest increase in tourist arrivals, reaching 79,431 compared to 83,309 in the same period last year, according to provisional data from the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority.

The daily average of arrivals stands at approximately 3,782, a decrease from the 5,000 daily arrivals seen in previous months.

Tourism typically experiences a lull from April through the summer, as this period is considered off-peak.

Authorities also suggest that recent visa issues may have contributed to the decline in arrivals for the month.

India has emerged as the leading source of tourist traffic, accounting for 26 per cent of total arrivals. The Maldives ranks second with 11 per cent.

Russia, previously among the top two sources of tourists, has dropped to the seventh position for May.

Industry stakeholders attribute this decline to Russian charter flights opting for alternative destinations this summer, citing increased hotel room rates and landing charges at Mattala International Airport.

Germany has climbed to third place, contributing 8 percent of total arrivals, followed by the United Kingdom at 7 per cent.

China has entered the top five markets, accounting for 6 per cent of total arrivals for May, thus ranking fifth.

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