Muscat: Oman received 7,000 visitors during the month of October this year according to facts shared by the National Centre for Statistics and Information (NSCI) Oman.
NCSI in its November report revealed that the number of visitors fell by 97.4 per cent this year as of October compared to a similar period of last year. Visitors from GCC region topped the list of visitors to Oman with close to 5,500 arriving into Oman the last month.
With the pandemic prevailing since March this year, the sea ports were closed for cruise ships leading to a complete stop in the cruise ship passengers. Muscat, is a port of call of many ships sailing from around the world, and Port Mina Qaboos, with its nearness to the Corniche and Muttrah souq always had bustling crowd of European travelers during the cruise-dock-time, which didn’t happen this year.
With the normal commercial operations of airlines having started since October there has been a marginal increase in in-bound travellers. The RO 22 million revenue that the three and five star hotels accounted for during last year in October dwindled to RO 4.7 million this year.
Reduced fare packages
The silver lining though for the hotel industry is the eagerness of residents and citizens to look at places of interest within Oman. Receptivity to the offers of reduced fare and package deals, by hotels in Oman has been good.
The 21 per cent occupancy rate in the hotels in Oman during the last month may be a negligible figure in comparison to the 60 per cent of last October, but the fact that the month of October has fared better than the previous months this year is again a positive pointer for Oman’s tourism industry.
It is pertinent to note the tweet recently by the Minister of Heritage and Culture Salim Al Mahrouqi about the popular region of Jabal Akhdar witnessing development of specific projects that would add to its appeal as a tourist destination throughout the year. Jabal Akhdhar boasts of prestigious hotel chain such as Anantara and Alila that promote their properties as niche mountain resorts in Oman.
There has also been a decrease in the number of outbound visitors from Oman to the tune of 84 per cent during the month of October as compared to October 2019.