The restrictions on vacations due to biosecurity measures in El Salvador are now behind us, as more than 3.9 million Salvadorans -almost half of the population- went on domestic tourism during Holy Week, as reported by the Salvadoran Tourism Institute (Istu).
“In regards to domestic tourism, we also have good news, since during the holiday period we received 3.9 million visitors,” confirmed the president of Istu, Eny Aguiñada.
For these vacations, the Ministry of Tourism (Mitur) had predicted that 500,000 Salvadorans would go on domestic tourism, and that 78,000 international vacationers would visit the country, but the numbers were exceeded.
A tweet from Mitur revealed that Salvadoran attendance increased by 76.9% between Holy Week 2022 and the same season this year, as there were more than 3.9 million visits in 70 monitored public sites, up from 2.2 million.
Aguiñada explained that Salvadorans spent more than $116 million during Holy Week, an average of $30 per person.
Where did Salvadorans go?
The authorities assured that the Historic Center of San Salvador was the most visited place during the Holy Week vacations. Mitur estimated that more than half a million people went on tourism in this place.
“The Historic Center was the difference in the domestic tourism that we had, it was tourism that came from the west and east,” said Tourism Minister Morena Valdez on Monday in an interview with Noticiero El Salvador.
Sunset Park, Cerro Verde, and Balboa Park, along with Los Chorros, the Ilamatepec volcano, and Apulo, were among the other most visited destinations during the holidays. Similarly, Mitur assured that Salvadorans mobilized inside the country, such as in Chalatenango, where “quite a lot of occupancy” was reported.
The Ministry of Governance stated that more than 416,000 people were counted in the main beaches. Meanwhile, Culture reported 55,000 visitors, 10,000 of whom were only in the National Palace.
Increase in foreigners.
El Salvador was also the chosen destination for 102,055 international visitors, who, according to Mitur, generated an economic spill of $95 million. The average spending was around $933.
The data shows that international tourism grew by 54.5% compared to the 66,449 received during the same holiday period in 2022.
Valdez confirmed that this year, international tourists surpassed the 76,295 visitors reported in 2019 by 33.7%.
“This figure can still increase, tour operators (told me) that they had visitors coming yesterday (Sunday) or coming today (Monday) to come after Holy Week,” the minister said.
The government stated that Guatemala, the United States, and Honduras were the main tourist emitters during this holiday.
On the other hand, the arrivals and departures at the Monseñor Óscar Arnulfo Romero International Airport were 123,553 people. According to the president of the Autonomous Port Executive Commission (CEPA), Federico Anliker, this represents a 24% increase compared to the same period in 2022.