Chile hopes to attract more than 7 million tourists in 2018, for an 8.5 percent increase over 2017.
SANTIAGO, Jan. 10 (Xinhua) -- Chile welcomed over 6.4 million foreign visitors in 2017, up 14.3 percent against 2016, the undersecretary of tourism Javiera Montes said on Tuesday.
With more than 3 million tourists, Argentina led the list of visitors, accounting for more than half of the total. Europe was another big market for Chile with nearly 480,000 travelers in 2017, up 6.3 percent compared to the previous year.
Led by China, Asia became one of Chile's biggest tourism markets. Arrivals from China were 30,000, or 33.8 percent more than in 2016. According to Montes, Chile has managed to overcome one of its biggest tourism drawbacks: short stays.
"Thanks to promotional campaigns, the development of new tourism products as well as destinations, and renewed diversification of experience, we have succeeded in reversing this tendency," said Montes.
Statistics showed that tourists stayed an average of 10 days in Chile in 2007, a significant improvement over the previous average of 7.5 days. Tourism spending also rose 35.6 percent to around 4.2 billion U.S. dollars. Chile hopes to attract more than 7 million tourists in 2018, for an 8.5 percent increase over 2017.