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Foreign tourists spend less money in Indonesia: BPS

Jakarta Globe - June 3, 2024

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – While the number of foreign tourists coming to Indonesia is breaking records, their average spending is lower than last year, according to the Central Statistics Agency (BPS).

Indonesia welcomed around 1.1 million foreign tourists in April. The Southeast Asian country recorded almost 4.1 million foreign travelers in the first four months of 2024, cumulatively. This is the highest number of international tourists that Indonesia has ever gotten over the January-April period since the pandemic hit the country in 2020. Despite the good news on the international tourist arrivals, these foreigners are not spending as much as they used to.

In the first quarter of 2024, the average foreign tourist spent an estimated $1,429 per visit. This was lower versus the $1,625 in average expenditure seen throughout 2023. In the post-Covid years, the average spending by a foreign visitor reached its highest in 2021. A tourist usually spent $3,097 when traveling in Indonesia in 2021, a huge growth compared to the $2,165 spending recorded in the previous year. The average expenditure sharply fell to $1,448 in 2022.

BPS reported that foreign tourists spent the most on hotels. Foreigners visiting Indonesia usually stayed for approximately 11.7 nights in the first quarter of 2024.

"About 37.85 percent of the money spent by the average foreign tourist in Q1-2024 went to accommodation. Followed by food and beverages at 20.6 percent," acting head Amalia A Widyasanti told a press conference on Monday.

"Some 12.67 percent of their expenditures [in Q1-2024] were spent on shopping and souvenirs," Amalia said.

International tourists used up 8.34 percent of the money that they had bought for entertainment. Around 5.93 percent went to local transportation. Local tour packages made up 3.92 percent of the foreigners' average spending, according to BPS data.

The World Economic Forum (WEF)'s 2024 Travel and Tourism Development Index shows that from a price standpoint, Indonesia is more competitive compared to fellow ASEAN member Singapore.

For the price competitiveness pillar, Indonesia recorded a score of 5.44 on a 1-7 scale, with 1 being the worst and 7 being the best outcome. The said pillar takes into account the hotel price index, short-term rental price, fuel price levels, and purchasing power parity.

For comparison, Singapore – despite placing way above Indonesia on the overall ranking – earned a 2.67 for price competitiveness. Prices to enjoy a vacation in Indonesia, however, are still less competitive compared to those of other ASEAN members such as Malaysia (6.2) and Vietnam (5.68).

Source: https://jakartaglobe.id/lifestyle/foreign-tourists-spend-less-money-in-indonesiabp