Did bad press or bad governance create the dip in tourist arrivals?


The dip in tourists in the month is no surprise as many countries had issued travel advisories on traveling to Sri Lanka. The entire country had come to a halt due to the lack of fuel and there was a shortage of cooking gas

The total number of tourist arrivals for August is 37,760, down 20 percent compared to 47,293 in July 2022, a month that saw a lot of political instability and commodity queues.

According to Sri Lanka Development Authority, in the last two weeks of August, arrivals dipped as low as 750 per day from around 1000 per day. Although the travel restrictions of some countries were relaxed by mid-August many had canceled their bookings and others had selected other destinations.

Meanwhile, Priyantha Fernando, the chairman of the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority thinks that it was the bad press that created the downward trend of tourist rivals.

“Although many countries removed the travel advisory on Sri Lanka, the bad press, especially by the international media continued,”


Priyantha Fernando, the chairman of Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority told Economy Next.

“…This happened especially in India. If you look at the Indian arrivals, they contribute a lot to the sudden drop in arrivals towards the latter part of August.”


Said Priyantha Fernando.

The top three tourist source markets for Sri Lanka in August were the United Kingdom with 6,776 British visiting the country, followed by 5,340 Indians and 3,251 Germans.

Whereas in July, 6,031 Indians visited Sri Lanka.

Overall, India has remained the top visitor for the first 8 months with 74,792 Indians visiting the country, followed by 58,879 British and at third place 48,321 Russians.

From January first to August the country has welcomed 458,670 travelers.


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