Published on : Wednesday, June 7, 2017
Laos attracted 1.11 million international tourists during January to March this year, which is a decrease of 12% from 1.24 million visits during the same period last year. The first quarter of 2017 saw 763,000 visits from ASEAN markets, which represented an 11% decrease when compared with 866,000 visits in the first quarter of 2016.
The Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism’s Tourism Development Department deputy general director, Phonemaly Inthaphome, said that the ministry is trying to figure out as to why there is such a dramatic decline in foreign visitors.
In 2016, tourist arrivals reached over 4.2 million, which was a decrease 10% from over 4.6 million in 2015. During 2016, revenue reached USD724 million, a slight reduction from USD725 million revenue in 2015.
Laos had the maximum number of Thai visitors, which was almost 2 million, followed by the Vietnamese with over 1.1 million arrivals. The country also saw over 545,000 Chinese visitors.
Meanwhile, Champasak province was the top ranked destination attracting nearly 400,000 visitors. It was followed by Vientiane province with over 360,000 visits, Savannakhet province with over 335,000 visits and Luang Prabang province with over 173,000 visits. The Xieng Khuang province received around 11,000 visits, which is the lowest number of visitors.
In order to attract more tourists, the government is now promoting tourist attractions around the country, hoping to increase domestic travel in the lead up to ‘2018 Visit Laos Year’.