Well on the way to recovery since the destination’s bold decision to kick off the last phase of its reopening in March 2021, the Indian Ocean archipelago market yet another milestone as the 114,859th visitor stepped into the Seychelles sun off Qatar Airways flight QR 678, which landed at 7.40am on Monday, 11 October, officially surpassing the total number of visitors recorded for the year 2020.
The 233 passengers and crew of QR 678 disembarked at the Seychelles International Airport at Pointe Larue to the sight of local dancers performing to the sound of the traditional music as the destination celebrated yet another milestone in its tourism performance.
They also received a token of appreciation from the Tourism Department as a sign of gratitude for valuing the small island destination.
At the airport to welcome the visitors and to mark this achievement the Seychelles’ Principal Secretary for Tourism, Mrs. Sherin Francis, said,
“Given the difficult year the travel industry has faced; every milestone calls for celebration. Today, we mark this important achievement with gratitude. Only two weeks ago we welcomed our 100,000th visitor for the year. The number 118, 859 today is a significant number as it shows that Seychelles remains a preferred destination for visitors. The figure is also a testament to the passion and dedication of the work done by our offices around the world, our industry partners and all Seychellois helping in the restart of the pillar of our economy. It is a proud day for our destination, as we have done in only 10 months what we had assume as the worst-case scenario in our recovery strategy.”
A dynamic diversification strategy following the tourism industry collapse after the onset of COVID has seen a steady increase in arrival numbers from Seychelles top current feeder markets including Russia, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Israel, Germany, France and Switzerland.
With Seychelles now on the approved travel list for UK as well as Italy, the resumption of flights by Condor and of Air France later this October, local tourism and hospitality operators are anticipating better times ahead of the half-term and winter holiday season as its traditional visitor source markets in Europe kick into gear.
Linking its economic recovery to a nation-wide vaccination programme, public health protocols as well as rigorous COVID-safety training and certification of businesses, tourism and hospitality operators, Seychelles was one of the first destinations to reopen its borders fully to visitors in March 2021, a strategy which is clearly paying off for the country for whom tourism is the main economic pillar.