El Salvador toursim grew by 90% per cent since 2019

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By LatAm Reports Staff Writers

The Ministry of Tourism recorded more than a million visits in the first quarter of 2024.

The arrival of international tourists in El Salvador grew by 90 per cent in the first quarter of 2024 compared to the same period in 2019, according to the United Nations Tourism Organization (UN Tourism). 

UN Tourism points out that El Salvador remains in fourth place with the best international tourism results since the covid-19 pandemic, only surpassed by Qatar, with an increase of 177%, compared to the first quarter of 2019; Albania, with an increase of 121%; and Saudi Arabia, with an increase of 98%.

The Ministry of Tourism (Mitur) revealed in April that El Salvador received more than a million international visitors in the first quarter of the year alone, equivalent to a 38 per cent growth compared to the same period in 2023. During that period, tourists injected $914 million into the local economy.

This projection would be more positive for El Salvador than the results obtained at the end of 2023, when UN Tourism acknowledged an increase in visits that was around 40 %.

Available data from the UN office indicate that Tanzania, Curacao, Serbia and Turks and Caicos Islands increased tourism by 53 per cent to 42 per cent from January to March compared to the last five years.

Guatemala is also on the list and, according to the report, the rise is around 41 per cent.

The strong performance of international tourism is also reflected in the UN tourism confidence index, which reached 130 points (on a scale of 0 to 200) for the period January to April, the UN barometer said.

The global picture

The UN Tourism anticipated in January that, at the end of 2024, international tourism would return to levels recorded before the pandemic, after reaching 1.3 billion international arrivals in 2023.

The increase in tourism in the world is also linked to an increase in demand and air connectivity, as well as the recovery of China and other Asian countries.

The report said the American continent recovered its pre- pandemic figures in the first months of the year, and arrivals reached 99 percent of 2019 levels.

By shortening the territory analyzed, Central America marks a 15 percent increase in the reception of international tourists.

Despite the positive results, UN Tourism stresses that high levels of inflation and interest rates persist in the world, which, together with the instability of the price of oil and the problems in international trade, harm the cost of transport and accommodation.

In El Salvador, although inflation in general stood at about 1.14 percent last April, the category of restaurants and hotels maintains the highest rate compared to the rest of the sectors with 5.54 percent, followed by the food and non-alcoholic beverage sector that reported 2.34 per cent.

UN Tourism expects tourists to find a balance between the quality of services and price, as well as trips closer to their countries.

The organization warns that high temperatures and weather events could affect the choice of tourist destinations.

The document recommends that countries continue to adapt and improve tourism at the national and local levels, with the aim of ensuring community development.