Seychelles, romance capital of the Indian Ocean |15 July 2021
Newlyweds account for almost 1 in 10 visitors to Seychelles Islands in 2021
The numbers speak loud for the exotic Indian Ocean archipelago, with almost 5,000 people choosing to make Seychelles their wedding or honeymoon destination so far this year ‒ showcasing how Seychelles remains a preferred destination for travellers from across the globe.
Signalling a positive recovery for international tourism, this news comes as Seychelles passes its first 50,000 visitors since the last phase of its reopening to the world, with tourists accounting for a huge 76% of total passengers. Since reopening its borders, visitor numbers have boosted back up to 50% of pre-Covid levels.
Despite the pressures of the pandemic, Seychelles has further cemented itself as the honeymoon capital of the Indian Ocean. Traveller data captured via the Seychelles Islands Travel Authorisation system shows 3,852 honeymooners landing on its shores over the past three months. Of these, Israeli newlyweds came out on top with 413 couples visiting the islands, closely followed by Saudi Arabia (229) and United Arab Emirates (UAE) (208). During the same period, Seychelles was also the destination of choice for 570 weddings (1,140 people).
With the tourism industry worldwide facing a difficult time, the holiday destination, a popular escape renowned for its white, sandy beaches, warm turquoise waters and diverse flora and fauna sees its arrival numbers soaring daily since reopening on March 25, 2021. The average visit to Seychelles is 11 days, enough time to fully enjoy the local experience.
Working to ensure Seychelles remains a Covid-safe destination, the recently launched Seychelles Islands Travel Authorisation, powered by Travizory, allows the government to screen and approve passengers’ pre-arrival ‒ including verification of PCR tests and vaccine certificates.
The authorisation process takes just five minutes to complete and guarantees peace of mind for tourists looking to get away during the pandemic. Taking the guesswork out of travel the Seychelles Islands Travel Authorisation has enabled the island nation to reopen safely and responsibly.
With travel restrictions in place in many of its traditional European markets, Seychelles has opened its borders to a host of new countries, and has recorded excellent arrival numbers from countries such as the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Israel, Germany and Ukraine for the first half of the year.
With some 10,000 Russian visitors flocking its shores, the island is expecting the numbers to increase drastically once other European countries ease their travel restrictions.
Seychelles is definitely expecting brighter days as the availability of flights from Europe, home to its main source markets, increases from July with Edelweiss’s arrival and Condor and Air France's probable return to the destination noted for October 2021.
Sherin Francis, principal secretary for tourism, said: "We are expecting better days ahead for the industry, the current booking trends are reflecting the forecasts we made at the beginning of the year. Records are showing that Seychelles could be receiving over 149,000 by December 2021, which for the industry would be very good news. We are confident that as vaccination progresses in various countries, consumer confidence will increase and this will influence our arrival numbers positively for the rest of the year"
Alan Renaud, principal secretary for civil aviation, said: "Marking 50,000 travellers since the launch of our Travel Authorisation System is a historic milestone for Seychelles, and to do so during the pandemic is proof of the wisdom of our customer-centric focus and choice in technology. That we have achieved half of our 2019 tourism levels in just six weeks since launch validates the resilience and attractiveness of our destination. Looking ahead, we will continue to invest in the travel experience to facilitate tourism, demonstrating technological innovation to provide unparalleled levels of product and service excellence."
Press release from Tourism Seychelles