Record numbers of international visitors flock to Georgia in 2018

  • Georgia hosted 8,679,544 international travellers in 2018. Photo: N. Alavidze/, 4 Jan 2019 - 12:27, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgia has set a new record, hosting over eight million international travellers this year, the Prime Minister of Georgia Mamuka Bakhtadze announces.

More specifically, Georgia hosted 8,679,544 international travellers in 2018, showing an increase of 9.8% year-on-year (y/y). Of these travellers, 4,756,820 were tourists, which is 16.9% more compared to 2017.

Bakhtadze said that these numbers prove that interest towards Georgia is increasing every day. He also recalled the important international ratings in which Georgia moved forward in 2018.

In 2018 Georgia was named as safe and touristically attractive country in the rankings of the world’s most influential organisations and publications. International research portal Numbeo gave Georgia fifth place among the 125 countries. Georgia is one of the fastest growing tourist destination and takes fourth place in the rating of UNWTO, while in Europe – we take the second place”, said Bakhtadze.

A positive trend was maintained by visitors from the European Union:

  • Estonia (+80%)
  • Slovakia (+62%)
  • Romania (+59%)
  • The Netherlands (+56%)
  • Germany (+50%)

The countries with the most significant increase were:

  • Korea (+112%)
  • China (+75%)
  • Belarus (+43%)
  • Israel (+36%)
  • Kuwait (+34%)
  • Kazakhstan (+25%)
  • The United States (+25%)

How did Georgia benefit from more visitors?

About $3 billion was generated from international tourism in Georgia in January-November 2018, which was $485 million more compared to the same period of 2017, shows the preliminary data.

In the I-III quarters of 2018 international tourism revenue reached $2.57 billion (+20.5%).

Meanwhile, in all of 2017 international tourism revenue reached $2.7billion, which was $594 million more compared to 2016.

What was done for promoting Georgia’s touristic potential?

The Georgian National Tourism Administration (GNTA) implemented number of projects to promote Georgia’s touristic potential in 2018.

The GNTA launched a campaign ‘Emotions are Georgia’. Within the campaign, a guidebook was created where the stories and impressions of seven million visitors to Georgia have been united to help new tourists discover Georgia as seen through the eyes of former visitors.

The world’s largest platforms, social networks and TV companies promoted Georgia last year - Facebook, Tripadvisor, National Geographic, YouTube, Expedia and Lonely Planet. Euronews, CNN and BBC.

The GNTA arranged 163 press tour and 24 introductory tour last year during which about 800 journalists, 300 tour-operators visited Georgia to discover its touristic potential. Over 1,000 articles and 200 TV stories were made about Georgia in 2018.

The World’s most influential editions published articles about Georgia such as Conde Nast Traveller, Forbes, NewYork Times, The Telegraph, National Geographic, Liberation, Deutsche Welle, Vogue.