The number of foreign tourists in St. Petersburg has exceeded the number of Russian tourists for the first time. According to the Tourism Development Committee, 3.7 million people visited the city from January to June this year. Of this 1.95 million were foreigners and 1.85 million were Russians.
Until now, St. Petersburg was more in demand among domestic visitors. But the share of foreign guests has been growing over the past three years. In 2015 it was 43% of the total flow, while in 2017 it was already 48% and now it has overcome domestic flow. The numbers were boosted by the World Cup hosted by Russia in the months of June and July.
The number of tourists in St. Petersburg during the event reached about 1 million, of which 650 thousand were foreign citizens. Thus, not counting the World Cup, the Russians retained their numerical superiority in the guest composition.
According to the World Cup committee, most foreigners came from China, Britain, Germany, USA, Finland, Italy, Canada, Australia and Spain. The largest increase was shown in Latin America and the Middle East. For example, the number of tourists from the Philippines, Egypt or Morocco during the championship, exceeded the number of tourists in 2017 by several times. The number of Estonian, Finnish, Argentinian and Brazilian tourists almost equaled that of last year.