Number of foreign tourists in 2014 dips by 50%

Published: September 27, 2014
PTDC says 198,201 tourists visited Pakistan from Jan to June of this year. PHOTO: STOCK

PTDC says 198,201 tourists visited Pakistan from Jan to June of this year. PHOTO: STOCK


The number of foreign visitors to Pakistan fell by 50 per cent in the first six months of this year, according to the State Bank of Pakistan. The Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) says that while 198,201 tourists visited the country from January to June of this year, the number is expected to rise by only 400,000 until the end of the season this year.

As compared with 2013, when Pakistan was a destination for 565,212 tourists, officials say natural disasters such as floods as well as internal conflict have greatly affected the tourism industry.

Additionally, officials at PTDC said there has been a dip in the number of tourists visiting Pakistan to undertake religious pilgrimages, such as Sikh pilgrims from India, since Operation Zarb-e-Azb commenced this year. The operation has also affected the number of travellers to Peshawar, Landi Kotal and the Khyber Pass, destinations for those travelling in the autumn months.


Domestic tourism

The PTDC estimates that 50 million domestic tourists will travel within the country on short trips (including day and weekend visits) this year. Domestic tourism has suffered a blow in August and September due to the ongoing political crisis in the capital as well as the flooding this month in Sindh and Punjab. While domestic tourists usually travel from May to August, the occurrence of Ramazan this year in July, followed by political protests in August affected travel plans. Travel to Murree, Swat, Gilgit-Baltistan, Azad Kashmir, Naran, Kaghan and Skardu were also affected for these reasons. Officials said fear of road blockades and unavailability of petrol or CNG has impacted domestic travellers’ plans.

The main destinations for domestic tourists are the Khyber Pass, Peshawar, Karachi, Lahore, Swat, Rawalpindi, Mohen jo Daro, Harappa, and Taxila, as well as hill stations around the country.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 27th, 2014.

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Reader Comments (12)

  • AVPMPolpot
    Sep 27, 2014 - 9:47AM

    Naya Pakistan
    Number of foreign tourists in 2014 dips by 50%


  • Nishant
    Sep 27, 2014 - 9:47AM

    Well I sort of find these numbers unreliable,
    It does not specify the International tourists as what?
    Is it overseas Pakistanis with dual citizenship? Cuz If that’s the case then I don’t think that it counts as international tourism.
    As far as tourism to Pakistan is concerned, why would I want the stamp of Pakistan on my passport, and get ready for obnoxious delays and questions at almost all airport in the world, including dubai and Istanbul


  • salman
    Sep 27, 2014 - 9:50AM

    Go Nawaz Go. Yet another failure of this Govt.


  • Gp65
    Sep 27, 2014 - 9:51AM

    If 562000 tourists had visited last year and 400000 are expected to visit this year, how does it represent a 50% dip?


  • Zack
    Sep 27, 2014 - 11:50AM

    Another achievement of the dharnas. IK is willing to destroy Pakistan to become the PM.


  • Saad
    Sep 27, 2014 - 12:05PM

    198,208 figure is for six months while all the other figures are annual.

    How can you say it’s 50% drop?

    someone needs to do their math.


  • Raj
    Sep 27, 2014 - 12:17PM

    If only Bilawal and Nawaz could wrest Kashmir all will be hunky dory. LOL


  • roarwali
    Sep 27, 2014 - 12:48PM

    I don’t think we have any mechanism in place to get tourism data regarding local people. For foreigner it’s easy as the number of tourism visas issued can be a metric for this purpose.


  • Parvez
    Sep 27, 2014 - 1:02PM

    Define TOURIST ?…… get a more accurate picture.


  • goggi (Lahore)
    Sep 27, 2014 - 1:15PM

    For all the civilised and peace loving
    humans of the global community, Pakistan is a Red Zone Territory.

    Religion extremism, intolerance and a totally uncritical life view has penetrated in the Pakistani society like a deadly poison.Recommend

  • Atif
    Sep 27, 2014 - 2:38PM

    Stop dragging PTI into this. The simple reason why tourists are not coming to Pakistan is because of poor law and order situation


  • Blithe
    Sep 28, 2014 - 11:47AM

    What do u expect when PTI is shiting carp


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