Tourists arrivals to Nepal via air in the month of May recorded a growth of 9.2 percent, despite reported cancellation of bookings by tourists because of banda and political instability. According to statistics maintained by Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) Immigration Office and disseminated by Nepal Tourism Board (NTB), a total of 42,820 foreign tourists entered the country in May through TIA.
South Asia maintained a sustained growth of 13.9 percent during the month due to growth from India, whose arrivals increased by 16.1 percent to 20,138 as compared to May, 2011. Arrivals from Sri Lanka increased by 6 percent, while number of Bangladeshi tourists increased nominally by 1.1 percent. However, arrivals from Pakistan declined by 32.5 percent. China â€“ one of the fastest markets for Nepal â€“ recorded a growth of 10.2 percent in May, compared to arrival figures recorded in the same month of 2011. Arrivals from Japan (26.8 percent) and Malaysia (31 percent) also increased during the month. But number of tourists from South Korea, Singapore and Thailand dropped during the review period. Number of European tourists recorded an overall positive growth of 8.3 percent during the month. Arrivals from UK, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands, Sweden, Poland, Russia and Czech Republic increased by 9.2 percent, 17.9 percent, 11.2 percent, 8.5 percent, 5.1 percent, 104.1 percent, 24.8 percent and 41.2 percent respectively. However, arrivals from Switzerland, Italy, Norway and Austria have declined marginally as compared to the same month last year. Arrivals from US and Australia increased by 12.3 percent and 9 percent respectively during the month, according to Nepal Tourism Board.