Record numbers visit Holy Land
Published 15 May 2012 | ASSIST News Service
Tourism to Israel continues its upward trend as record numbers of tourists flocked to the Holy Land in April.
A record 354,000 tourists arrived in Israel last month, representing a 12% increase over the last previous record April, set in 2010.
Over one million tourists have traveled to Israel during the first four months of 2012, representing a 19% increase over 2011 figures for the same period, and a 12% increase over the same period in 2010, the last record year for tourism. Easter and Passover both fell in the month of April in 2012 and in 2011.
In addition, the number of tourists entering by air increased 3% over the same period last year representing 793,000 entries. About 140,000 people entered by land borders, up 8% over the same period in 2011. Much of this increase is attributed to the political stability in Egypt and accordingly, Israel's major tourism crossing border with Egypt had 42,600 tourists representing an increase of 30% compared to the same period last year.
Minister of Tourism, Stas Misezhnikov, said: "The consistent increase in the numbers of visitors entering Israel positions the country as an attractive tourism destination of the first order, makes a contribution to the national economy and increases employment market in the center and the periphery."
Given the additional hotel rooms underdevelopment along with continued quiet in the region, Israel's tourism industry could very well continue with its record double digit growth. If the current increases remain steady, for the first time Israel may come close to or even surpass the four million tourist mark in 2012.