In January-June 2017, there were 2.99 million visitors in Georgia, which is 13% more compared to the same period of 2016, according to data from Geostat.
Out of these visitors, 1.3 million stayed on the territory of Georgia for more than 24 hours, which is 29% more compared to last year. According to international classifications, only those staying in the country for more than 24 hours and using the service sector (restaurants, hotels, etc.) are considered tourists.
The most visitors came from Azerbaijan (up 7% y/y), Armenia (up 16% y/y), Turkey (down 15% y/y), Russia (up 27% y/y) and Iran (up 223% y/y).
June was the most active period, as there were 666,000 foreigners visiting Georgia, which is 28% more compared to last year.
Top 10 countries from which Georgia had the most visitors in the first six months of 2017:
- Azerbaijan - 737,000 visitors
- Armenia - 642,000 visitors
- Turkey - 531,000 visitors
- Russia - 507,000 visitors
- Iran - 120,000 visitors
- Ukraine - 84,000 visitors
- Israel - 49,000 visitors
- India - 27,000 visitors
- Kazakhstan - 21,000 visitors
- Poland - 20,000 visitors
In the first half of 2017, money transacted through foreign credit cards in Georgia amounted to 435 million GEL, which is 23% more compared to the same period last year.
Income from tourists in 2016 amounted to 2.2 billion USD, which is 230 million USD more compared to the same indicator of the previous year, and an 11.9% increase.
The number of visitors that remained in the country for more than 24 hours in 2016 grew by 19%. Out of 6.3 million visitors, 2.7 million foreign citizens remained in Georgia for more than 24 hours.
According to the National Tourism Administration report, there are 1,700 hotels registered in Georgia in 2016. Tbilisi leads with 14,837 available bed places, followed by the Adjara region with 11,615 beds places.
In 2016, around 3.1 thousand bed places were added countrywide, with recently opened hotels including the Biltmore Tbilisi, Crowne Plaza, Gino Wellness, and others.
Despite the growth in tourism in 2016 in comparison to recent years, tourism has yet to regain the levels experienced from 2007-2013. The highest growth indicator in tourism was in 2012, which was 56% year-on-year.
In 2013, the growth indicator was 21%, and in 2014 - 2.3%, due to the introduction of stricter visa regulations. The growth indicator slightly recovered in 2015, reaching 7%.