Uruguay tourism revenue decreased by USD 90 million in the first half of this year when it amounted to USD 1.035 billion over USD 1.125 billion in the same period last year.
From January to June Uruguay tourism reported 1.6 million visitors according to tourism minister Liliám Kechichián. Although the total number of tourists who chose Uruguay as a holiday destination increased compared to the first six months of 2015, those who came to the country did so for fewer days which reduced the average individual spending. Kechichián noted that this is a trend that is occurring throughout the world.
Uruguay tourism was boosted the most by Argentinians whose number increased by 33% compared to the same period in 2015. "In June alone 44% more Argentinians arrived in the country," the minister said.
There was also an increase in the number of Brazilians who, with 15%, are positioned as the second most important group.
Figures for Paraguayans and Chileans remained at the levels similar to last year's figures, and there was a positive change in the number of extra-regional tourists (Europeans and Americans), but Kechichián did not specify the percentages for these groups.
The minister reported that in the past eight years 8,000 new hotel rooms have become available all over the country. "In 2015 alone 1,500 beds were added," she said, noting that this is a result of the benefits granted to investors, as listed in the Investments Law which gives preference to enterprises in traditionally non-tourist areas.
She mentioned as an example the recent opening of the Hyatt Centric in Pocitos, as well as different hotel chains located in the interior and other new ones being studied by the Investments Law Application Committee.