Myanmar’s tourism arrivals through Yangon grew 15% last year

Myanmar is the next country after Vietnam, Laos and the Philippines reporting significant growth in the number of international tourist arrivals for last year, while Southeast Asian long-time frontrunner Thailand is close to stagnation mainly due to the strong baht.

Tourist arrivals through Myanmar’s main gateway Yangon airport grew by 15 per cent last year to 1,323,994. This number excludes arrivals overland and through Mandalay and Naypyitaw, the country’s two other international airports, though. Once overland arrivals at all border checkpoints are counted, last year’s arrival number could reach four million, officials said.

Still, this is a far cry from the 2020 forecast of 7.5 million outlined in the country’s tourism masterplan 2013 to 2020 which was funded by the Asian Development Bank.

However, for the country’s travel industry, airline arrivals at Yangon airport are considered an accurate yardstick to measure the success of worldwide tourism promotions.

Asia is most important source market

In 2019, Asia emerged as the dominant source region with 1,060,396 arrivals, an increase of 20 per cent. This compares to just 142,443 arrivals from Western Europe which recorded zero growth last year over 2018.

China drove the growth in Asian markets, counting for 344,268 arrivals, up by a massive 75 per cent and taking over Thailand as the top source market for international arrivals in Myanmar. Thailand now the second-largest market closed the year with 229,852 arrivals, an increase of two per cent.

Japan continues as the third-largest market – as far as arrivals at Yangon’s airport are concerned – with 114,823 visits, up 27 per cent. South Korea, with 70,194 arrivals, up four per cent, was in fourth place, while the US counted for 56,683 arrivals, an improvement of two per cent and placing the country on the fifth spot. It was the only non-Asian market in the top ten-list of source countries.

Arrivals from UK, France, Australia dropped

Other strong top performers were Singapore, Vietnam, India, Malaysia and Taiwan 36,874, while Myanmar has been losing traction in some traditionally important European markets noted for high yield clients. The UK market with 28,072 visits dropped by seven per cent, France with 30,394 arrivals slumped two per cent and Switzerland with 6,570 arrivals declined by ten per cent

However, the good news in Europe focused on Germany with 21,691 visits, up two per cent, Spain with 11,301 visits, up a whopping 20 per cent, as well as Italy with 16,550, up 14 per cent. In turn, arrivals from Australia declined by eight per cent % to 22,135.

Myanmar is the next country after Vietnam, Laos and the Philippines reporting significant growth in the number of international tourist arrivals for last year, while Southeast Asian long-time frontrunner Thailand is close to stagnation mainly due to the strong baht. Tourist arrivals through Myanmar’s main gateway Yangon airport grew by 15 per cent last year to 1,323,994. This number excludes arrivals overland and through Mandalay and Naypyitaw, the country’s two other international airports, though. Once overland arrivals at all border checkpoints are counted, last year’s arrival number could reach four million, officials said. Still, this is a far cry from...

Myanmar is the next country after Vietnam, Laos and the Philippines reporting significant growth in the number of international tourist arrivals for last year, while Southeast Asian long-time frontrunner Thailand is close to stagnation mainly due to the strong baht.

Tourist arrivals through Myanmar’s main gateway Yangon airport grew by 15 per cent last year to 1,323,994. This number excludes arrivals overland and through Mandalay and Naypyitaw, the country’s two other international airports, though. Once overland arrivals at all border checkpoints are counted, last year’s arrival number could reach four million, officials said.

Still, this is a far cry from the 2020 forecast of 7.5 million outlined in the country’s tourism masterplan 2013 to 2020 which was funded by the Asian Development Bank.

However, for the country’s travel industry, airline arrivals at Yangon airport are considered an accurate yardstick to measure the success of worldwide tourism promotions.

Asia is most important source market

In 2019, Asia emerged as the dominant source region with 1,060,396 arrivals, an increase of 20 per cent. This compares to just 142,443 arrivals from Western Europe which recorded zero growth last year over 2018.

China drove the growth in Asian markets, counting for 344,268 arrivals, up by a massive 75 per cent and taking over Thailand as the top source market for international arrivals in Myanmar. Thailand now the second-largest market closed the year with 229,852 arrivals, an increase of two per cent.

Japan continues as the third-largest market – as far as arrivals at Yangon’s airport are concerned – with 114,823 visits, up 27 per cent. South Korea, with 70,194 arrivals, up four per cent, was in fourth place, while the US counted for 56,683 arrivals, an improvement of two per cent and placing the country on the fifth spot. It was the only non-Asian market in the top ten-list of source countries.

Arrivals from UK, France, Australia dropped

Other strong top performers were Singapore, Vietnam, India, Malaysia and Taiwan 36,874, while Myanmar has been losing traction in some traditionally important European markets noted for high yield clients. The UK market with 28,072 visits dropped by seven per cent, France with 30,394 arrivals slumped two per cent and Switzerland with 6,570 arrivals declined by ten per cent

However, the good news in Europe focused on Germany with 21,691 visits, up two per cent, Spain with 11,301 visits, up a whopping 20 per cent, as well as Italy with 16,550, up 14 per cent. In turn, arrivals from Australia declined by eight per cent % to 22,135.

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