Tourist arrivals down marginally

Tourist arrivals to Nepal via air dropped by a marginal 0.3 percent to 585,981 in 2014 compared to figures of a year.

This is the second straight year that Nepal has witnessed fewer tourist arrivals via aerial route. In 2013, tourist arrivals had dropped by 1.73 percent to 587,842. Number of tourists in 2012, however, had increased by 9.8 percent to 598.204.

Drop in tourist arrivals have been blamed to the impacts of avalanche in the Everest region in April and blizzards in the Annapurna Region in October. Similarly, closure of casinos and travel advisory to European visitors by the European Commission not to use Nepali airlines also affected tourist arrivals, according to tourism entrepreneurs.

Issuing a statement, Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) said Nepal observed a sustained growth in international tourist arrivals in January, February, April and May but suffered a fall from June onwards. “The decline suggests that Nepal needs to promote its tourism products in the international market more aggressively in order to increase tourist arrivals,” the statement added.

Arrivals from India increased by fell by 35.46 percent to 105,283. However, number of tourists from China increased by 17.86 percent to 71,107 in 2014.

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