Manado`s airport marks arrival of the 100,000th foreign tourist

Manado`s airport marks arrival of the 100,000th foreign tourist

Foreigners in Sam Ratulangi Airport, Manado, North Sulawesi. FOTO ANTARA/Nur Budiantoro/ama/09

Manado, N Sulawesi (ANTARA News) - State-owned airport operator PT Angkasa Pura I welcomed the 100,000 foreign tourists arriving at the Sam Ratulangi airport this year.

On Monday, Silk Air landed at the airport at 01.00 p.m. local time with tourists from Singapore marking the visit by the 100,000th foreign tourists to North Sulawesi this year.

A strong growth was recorded in the number of visits by foreign tourists in North Sulawesi so far this year, General Manager of the Sam Ratulangi branch of PT Angkasa Pura I Minggus Gandegiau said here.

"The number of visits by foreign tourists via Sam Ratulangi airport rose 74 percent to 88,312 in the January-August period," Minggus said.

Chinese dominated the number of foreign tourists visiting North Sulawesi. The number of Chinese tourists were recorded at 76,724 in the first 8 months of the year or an increase of 90 percent from the same period last year.

Other tourists included those from Singapore up 10 percent to 1,580 and from Germany, up 34 percent to 1,392.

"More tourists from European and American countries began to show interest in visiting North Sulawesi such as from Germany, Italy, France, Switzerland and the United States. The numbers grow by more than 15 percent on the average," Gandegiau said.

Silk Air has almost regularly transported tourists from Singapore to the region since 1994 and tourists from China began to follow on chartered flights only in 2016.

Indonesian Lion Air regularly flies to a number of Chinese cities including Changsha, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Tianjin, and Zhengzhou to pick up tourists to visit North Sulawesi.

Other Indonesia airlines -- Citilink and Sriwijaya Air - have also served chartered flights from China to the region.

"Today, we, the management of the Sam Ratulangi airport, officials of the provincial administration including from the Immigration office, Customs office, and other related agencies are welcoming the arrival of the 100,000th foreign tourists at the airport this year, on board Silk Air from Singapore," Minggus said in a ceremony to mark the arrival of the 100,000th foreign tourists.

Reporting by Nancy Lynda Tigauw
Editing by A Saragih, Bustanuddin