Wednesday, January 16th 2013 - 05:54 UTC

Record tourist arrivals in Chile during 2012: 3.5million. Target for this year: 4m

Chile received a total of 3.5 million foreign tourists in 2012, a 13% hike over the year before and an all-time record. The 13% gain far outpaced the 6% increase that Latin America scored as a whole last year, Chile's deputy secretary for tourism, Jacqueline Plass, said.

Ms Plass said that most tourists came from South American countries

“In two years we've gone from 2.7 million tourists to 3.5 million. The country hasn't seen such a growth rate since the year 2005, when tourist arrivals increased by 13.4%”, she said.

According to the report, Argentina was the chief source of tourists visiting Chile in 2012, with a share of close to 40%, no less than a 23% increase over 2011.

Brazil had an 11% share and was up 14.3%, the report said, adding that the number of tourists from Colombia climbed 18.6% and from Australia, 37.3%. The increase from other South American countries was 15.2% while tourists from Asia also were up, 15%.

However from Europe the increase was only 4.5% with the Spaniards leading with an increase in numbers of 12% and Germany, 9%. North America was also modest, 4.3% with 3.3% in the case of the US, 6.3% Mexico and 6.8% Canada.

One of this year's projects, Plass said, will be to work at attracting vacationers from Canada and Mexico, to get them on the list of Chile's leading sources of foreign tourists.

The goal, according to Plass, is to bring forward to 2013 the target of 4 million tourists, a number previously estimated for the end of 2014.
 

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1 Anglotino (#) Jan 16th, 2013 - 07:03 am Report abuse
A 40% increase from Argentina and a 37.3% increase from Australia. Nearly the same increase but totally different reasons.

One of those increases was causes by a tanking economy, skyrocketing inflation plummeting wealth and reduced spending power and shortages caused by a government ruining, decimating and hobbling an economy by following the whims of a populist president.

The other increase was caused by high growth, low inflation, increased wealth and spending power in a land of plenty watched over by an unpopular government that plans, executes and reforms the economy by following orthodox economic policies.

Which is which do you think?
2 Rufus (#) Jan 16th, 2013 - 09:44 am Report abuse
It's good to see their neighbour doing so much to help Chile achieve their visitor numbers target.

I hear that Punta Arenas is doing especially well out of the generosity of Argentina in passing up tourist dollars...
3 Condorito (#) Jan 16th, 2013 - 03:08 pm Report abuse
It is funny, on another thread, pirate-hunter was suggesting that MP was lying in saying that Argies were paying 8 pesos a dollar in Chile - you should see the line of Argies down at the money exchange in town waiting to buy dollars at that rate. It hurts them, but they have to do it if they want to take home all the electronics and luxury items they can't get back home.

In the past we would see increasing numbers of Argies only when the Chilean peso was cheap for them. Or when the Argie peso was dirt cheap in 2001/2 we were all flooding over there for cheap weekend breaks. But this it totally different - Chile is very expensive for Argies right now, yet they are coming in massive numbers (1.5 million last year). They are effectively working round CFK's import restrictions.

I wonder how long it will be before they start getting taxed at the border on the way home.
4 The Chilean perspective (#) Jan 17th, 2013 - 04:14 am Report abuse
Condorito.
I heard that they do have to pay taxes, but the fact that they simply cannot get these goods back home plus the fact that after the taxes they are still cheaper than comparable items available in Argentina makes it worthwhile. People will always find creative ways to get around stupid government policies and Argies are pretty shifty so no surprise here.

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