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Domestic tourism sees 15% increase
By Ahmad Al-Aryani
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 25 - 02 - 2009

Domestic tourism in the summer of 2008 witnessed a 15 percent increase on the previous year, official figures reveal.
Statistics from the Information and Tourist Research Center (ITRC) at the Commission of Tourism and Antiquities show that 11 million tourist trips were made inside the Kingdom between July and September of 2008, compared to 9.6 million during the same period of the previous year.
The ITRC puts the number of nights reserved in hotels and furnished apartments at 86.4 million compared to 72 million nights in 2007, representing a 19.5 percent increase.
The center's data estimate total domestic tourist spending for the summer of 2008 at SR10.6 billion. This shows a 14 percent increase on the SR9.3 billion outlay for 2007.
Mohammad Al-Ahmad, Director General of the ITRC, reiterated the importance of promoting domestic tourism and noted the increase in festivals around the Kingdom, with 24 festivals held in 12 provinces.
“These festivals contributed greatly to size of domestic tourism in 2008,” Al


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