International tourism reaches 97% of pre-virus levels in Q1

ANKARA – International tourism reached 97 percent of its pre-pandemic level in the first quarter of this year, the UN Tourism said on Tuesday.

More than 285 million tourists traveled internationally in January-March, rising 20 percent from the previous year, it said.

While export revenues from tourism remained at 97 percent, direct tourism GDP reached the same levels as in 2019.

The UN specialized agency for tourism expects international tourism to fully recover in 2024 with arrivals exceeding 2 percent of 2019 levels.

Europe, the world's largest destination region, surpassed pre-virus levels in a quarter for the first time, up 1 percent to 120 million international tourists in the first three months of the year, backed by robust intra-regional demand.

The Middle East saw the strongest relative growth, with international arrivals exceeding by 36 percent pre-pandemic levels this January-March.

Contrary to other regions, Asia and the Pacific has not fully recovered yet despite a strong growth in international tourist figure.

Arrivals reached 82 percent of its 2019 first-quarter level. (Anadolu)