COLOMBO, Oct. 15 (Xinhua) -- Sri Lanka's off-season tourism campaign has attracted a large number of tourists to the island country with over 1,000 bookings made in the first three weeks of the promotion, Sri Lanks's Tourism Minister, John Amaratunga quoted in local media said on Monday.
The Sri Lankan government launched a mega campaign branded "Island Escapes" to boost off-season tourist traffic to the island country. The campaign was launched in mid-September and expected to run till November.
Amaratunga said the promotional campaign included an investment of an estimated 380,000 US dollars.
The off-season tourism campaign is offering numerous budget packages, as low as 99 US dollars per person for a three-night stay.
The packages were developed by the government in collaboration with some airlines, travel agencies and hotels. The Tourism Ministry said the campaign is mainly targeting Middle Eastern, Indian and Chinese tourist markets as well as Sri Lankans living abroad.
Amaratunga said depending on the success of the inaugural campaign currently underway, the government is expecting to run it annually, during the April to July and September to November off-peak seasons.
From January to September this year, Sri Lanka has received over 1.7 million tourists, while the government said it is targeting a 2.5 million arrival by the end of the year.
India, China and Britain have been the leading markets for Sri Lanka Tourism.