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Number of tourists in Riga reached a new record last year – 3.5 million

Photo: pixabay.com
Last year, Riga attracted a record large number of tourists – 3.5 million of foreign guests visited Latvia’s capital city in 2018, according to information compiled by Live Riga. The largest number of visitors came from Germany – 176.9 thousand or 11.9% of all foreign guests.

Germans are followed by Russian (173.8 thousand or 11.7%), Estonian (109.8 thousand), Lithuanian (100.4 thousand or 6.7%) and British tourists (98.7 thousand or 6.6%).

Riga Tourism Development Bureau’s board chairman Vita Jermoloviča comments the increase of the number of tourists as a result of tourism strategy: «The tourist increase in Riga is proof that our chosen tourist attraction strategy was correct and that potential guests have heard us. We are very happy to see their numbers and the time they spend in Riga increase. We have also observed an increase from countries in which we perform information campaigns. In 2018 Riga’s offer for tourists was wide and massive, because a number of important cultural events, sports competitions and festivities associated with the country’s centenary took place that year, especially the Song and Dance Celebration. Events like Riga Restaurants Week and Riga Street Food Festival have also become a tradition in Riga. Last year, we performed a number of marketing activities involving world-known Latvian athletes like tennis player Aļona Ostapenko and boxer Mairis Briedis. Riga has also become very prominent on the map of popular tourist destinations in Europe and the world.»

Riga received a large number of guests from priority markets. Compared to 2017, the number of tourists from France has grown by 15%. Considerable increases have been observed for guests from Britain (13.6%), Germany (10.6%), as well as Sweden (4.2%) and Italy (4%). The number of guests from USA has increased by 10.6%, which is one of Riga Tourism Development Agency’s priority markets.

The time tourists spend in Riga has increased by 10%. This increase can be explained with more offers in Riga and inter-city cooperation, which motivates tourists to stay for longer and visit more locations.

It is notable that the number of foreign and local tourists keeps increasing every year. Last year, the number of Latvians staying in hotels and other tourist accommodations had reached 232,635, which is 13.5% of all serviced guests.

August is tourists’ most preferred month. The occupancy in hotels in August 2018 was 80.6%, which is 10% more when compared to the same month of 2017. At the same time, the goal of Riga Tourism Development Agency is increasing the number of tourists by 10% in non-tourism season months.


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