Sri Lankan minister says country’s off-season tourism boosting campaign launched last month drawing many bookings
Tourism Development Minister of Sri Lanka John Amaratunga has reportedly stated that a campaign launched in mid-September branded “Island Escapes” aimed at boosting off-season tourist traffic to the country has drawn over a thousand bookings in a few weeks.
“We have got over 1,000 bookings,” Amaratunga has told a business forum in Colombo recently.
According to reports, the promotional campaign developed by the government with an investment of Rs. 65 million was launched on September 15 and is expected to run until November.
Tourists arriving in Sri Lanka on average spend around US$ 165 per day.
The off-season tourism campaign is offering numerous budget packages, as low as US$ 99 per person for a three-night stay.
The packages were developed by the government in collaboration with some airlines, travel agencies and hotels.
In the peak December to March period, Sri Lanka received over 230,000 visitors a month.
However, Sri Lanka has welcomed 149,000 visitors in September which is a 2.8 percent increase. September is considered an off-season period.
The campaign is mainly targeting Middle Eastern, Indian and Chinese tourist markets as well as Sri Lankans living overseas.
Depending on the success of the inaugural campaign currently underway, the government is expecting to run it annually, during the April to July and September to November off-peak seasons, local media reports stated.
Sri Lanka’s tourism sector is on a continuous growth path and the authorities have continuously introduced new promotional campaigns to further boost the sector. The government this year launched an innovative campaign to target off-season tourism in the country. As stated by the Tourism Development Minister, a few weeks after launching the campaign, Sri Lanka has received over a thousand bookings. This is an encouraging sign given that the tourism sector usually experiences a lull during the off seas. Sri Lanka is also venturing into new tourism themes like golf, wellness, etc as well. Therefore, foreign businesses could look at investing in Sri Lanka’s tourism sector.
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