According to news from Armenia’s Economic Ministry, some 35,000 Iranian tourists visited the country in the first half of this 2014. Over 495,000 tourists from Iran came to Armenia, an increase of some 17.3% compared to the same period last year.
Other numbers for Armenian visitation inlcuded; 44% of the tourists coming from Russia, 28% from Georgia, and 12-14% from the EU (Germany, France, Italy and Scandinavia), while Iran’s tourists represented about 7% of the total. Armenia and Iran have already unveiled plans to sign a memorandum on cooperation for mutual touristic benefit, according to the reports.
The head of the Department of Tourism at Armenia’s Ministry of Economy, Mekhak Apresyan, made this comment earlier this year:
“Iran is an important market for us. This country is not only our neighbor, but we have good neighborly relations with it, which is important for the sphere. Armenia is more accessible and affordable for them and with this new memorandum we will expand and intensify our cooperation in the sector.”
This 2008 paper (PDF) from the Economic Ministry tells of the potential for Armenia in this sector. The number of Iranian tourists, as a percentage, has actually risen less than the total number of Russian travelers according to the original Tourism Development Plan numbers from back then. Among the positives we now see though, the average number of days at 20 or more, this reflects a very positive revenue to marketing ratio. Repeat visitation also remains high, which is another positive sign. Areas of possibility include Winter vacationing, as well as MICE tourism.
For more information on Armenia, please take the time to visit the country’s tourism website.