Tourists have been arriving in Iceland in increasing numbers, while Icelanders are also travelling abroad more.
According to Vísir, data from the Icelandic Tourist Board shows that 34,333 foreign travellers left the international airport in April of this year. This marks a 40% increase from April of 2010.
While last year’s Eyjafjallajökull eruption can certainly account for part of the increase between April of last year and this one, there has never been more than 30,000 tourists in Iceland in April before – the closest came in 2007 and 2009, when they numbered about 28,000. As such, a new record for the month has been set.
Most of April’s tourists were from the UK, comprising 20.8% of all Iceland’s visitors that month. Following were Americans (10.3%), Danes (9.8%) and Norwegians (9.3%). Regionally, North Americans made the strongest increase between the years (44%), followed by central and southern Europeans (27.8%) and then those from Nordic countries (17%).
Meanwhile, Icelanders travelling abroad have made about a 50% increase, from about 19,000 in April 2010 to 29,000 last month. Looking at 2011 as a whole, Icelanders travelling abroad has already increased by some 20%, when compared to this time last year in 2009.