International tourism revenue exceeded pre-pandemic levels in the first four months of the year, official data shows.
Citing data published by national statistics agency INEGI, federal Tourism Minister Miguel Torruco Márques reported that international tourists spent US $8.67 billion in Mexico between January and April.
Revenue was 123.8% higher than in the first four months of 2021 and 3.7% higher than in the same period of 2019, Torruco said in a statement Sunday. The data is welcome news for the tourism sector, which was hit hard by the pandemic and associated economic restrictions.
The bulk of the international tourism revenue – about 92% – came from visitors who flew into the country.
International tourists who arrived by air between January and April spent an average of US $1,153 each, an 8.8% increase compared to the same period of last year and a 9.8% jump compared to the first four months of 2019. Average expenditure for all international tourists – people who arrived by air, land and sea – was just under $745, a 56.1% increase compared to last year and a 30.8% spike compared to 2019, Torruco said.
The increase in individual expenditure allowed revenue to exceed 2019 levels even though fewer international tourists visited Mexico. Torruco said that just over 11.64 million international tourists entered the country in the first four months of the year, a 43.4% increase compared to the same period of last year but a 20.8% decline compared to the January-April period of 2019, when 14.7 million international tourists visited.
Just over 6.91 million of the international tourists – 59% of the total – flew into the country. Air arrivals increased 121.7% compared to the first four months of last year but were 3.4% below 2019 levels.
Torruco predicted last month that international tourist numbers will come close to reaching pre-pandemic levels this year.
Speaking at the Tianguis Turístico tourism industry event in Acapulco, Guerrero, the tourism minister predicted that Mexico will receive 40 million international visitors in 2022, which would be just 5 million short of the 45 million record set in 2019.
He also predicted that tourism-generated revenue will be $24.25 billion and declared that tourism in Mexico will have recovered “almost 100%” by the end of the year.
Mexico News Daily