15% decline in visitors to Salalah in khareef season
There has been a 15 per cent fall in the number of visitors in the first five weeks of the khareef season, according to the National Centre for Statistics and Information (NCSI).
The total number of visitors stood at 183,115 as on July 25, NCSI statistics show.
However, compared to the fourth week of the season, there was a 98.3 per cent rise in the number of visitors in the fifth week to 81,599. Of the total, 65.5 per cent were Omanis and there was a 15.8 per cent fall in the number of Omani visitors compared to last year. Non-Omanis comprise 34.5 per cent of the total visitors.
GCC visitors excluding Omanis comprised 17.5 per cent of the total while Asians comprised 12.1 per cent.
Overall 72.7 per cent visitors arrived via the land routes. The number of Omani visitors at the end of the fifth week of the season stood at 119,958 this year compared to 142,413 in 2016.
There were 32,069 GCC tourists compared to 33,069 during the same period last year. Visitors from Asian countries declined to 22,183 this year from 30,408 last year, while the number of European tourists increased to 1,347 this year from 1,022 last year. Visitors from other nations also increased this year to 835 while it was 619 during the same period last year.
The total number of GCC visitors till July 25 was 152,027 compared to 176,366 in 2016. Of these, 119,958 were Omanis, 17,846 from the UAE, 9,380 from Saudi Arabia, 1,581 from Bahrain, 1,788 from Kuwait and 1,474 from Qatar.
Visitors from other Arab nations were 6,723 this year compared to 6,892 last year. Of these, there were 847 Syrians, 1,449 Egyptians, 482 Jordanians, 261 Lebanese, 63 Tunisians, 270 Iraqis and 3,351 from other nations in the region.
Of the 22,183 visitors from Asian nations, 12,219 were from India, 4,445 from Pakistan, 547 from the Philippines and 4,972 from other countries.
Of the 1,347 European tourists, 530 were from the UK compared to 439 in 2016. There were 161 German,117 French and 46 Spanish tourists. There were also 493 visitors from other European nations compared to 328 last year.
From the Americas, there were 497 visitors compared to 365 last year. Of these, 328 were from the US, 99 from Canada and 70 from other nations.
From Africa, there were 240 visitors this year compared to 148 in 2016, while 97 came from countries in Oceania.
While visitors from GCC nations fell by 13.8 per cent in the fifth week, those from Asia saw a decline of 27 per cent and from other Arab countries fell by 2.5 per cent.
There was a 31.8 per cent increase in the number of visitors from Europe and a growth of 34.9 per cent in visitors from other countries. However, there was a combined 15 per cent fall in visitors during the period, according to NCSI statistics.
There was a 39.6 per cent rise in the number of visitors who arrived by domestic flights, while those arriving by international flights saw a decline of 3.6 per cent. Arrival via land routes to Salalah also saw a 24 per cent decline. The Visitors Survey, which started on June 21 will continue till September 21.
The survey is being conducted for the 14th successive year, in cooperation with the Ministry of Tourism and ROP. The project aims at identifying the number of local and foreign tourists during the khareef season and analysing the growth trends.