First Quarter Results: Georgia's Tourism Continues to Grow

An increasing number of travelers are choosing to come to Georgia, as can be seen in a year-to-year comparison of the first quarters of 2015, 2016 and 2017. In 2018, international visitors amounted to a total of 1,582,382, a 14.2% increase compared to the previous year’s first quarter. 

The biggest share of international visitors is attributed to neighboring countries led by Azerbaijan (284,524) and followed by Armenia (243,989), Turkey (238,524) and Russia (208,803).

Visits by border type

The highest number of visits were by land amounting to 1,016,442, an increase of 16.7% compared to last year. According to border control, most of the visits were through Tbilisi International Airport 257,551, a 36% increase since 2017 first quarter. 

Purpose of stay

63.6% amounted to overnight stays, while 36.4% of visits lasted for a day. The largest share of purpose of stay is attributed to relaxation, enjoyment and recreation amounting to 35%. The statistics are followed by visiting friends/family (26.8%), transit (15.6%), shopping (9.8%), business (7.8%), medical (3.2%) and other (1.8%). 

Length of stay

The average duration of the visit was 4.3 night, varied among different countries. Residents of neighboring countries stayed relatively shorter days in Georgia, except for Russian visitors who stayed for longer than 5.8 days. Europeans can be distinguished by length of stay (Central and Eastern Europe – 7.6 nights, other European countries – 10.4 nights). The other visitors, on average, stayed for 7.8 nights during their stay. 

Most visited cities and regions

The most visited city was Tbilisi, amounting to 51% of total international visits, followed by Batumi - 21.5%. The least number of visits were observed in Marneuli (13%), Gudauri (11.1%), Kazbegi (6%), Mtskheta (5.8%), Kutaisi (3.5%), Rustavi (3.5%), Borjomi (2.9%), Akhaltsikhe (2.3%) and Bakuriani (2.3%)

Information sources

Visitors conducted preliminary planning before visiting Georgia. 47.9% gathered information from friends/family, 12.1% surfed the internet and 12.1% used organizations/business partners as a source. Most of the visitors, amounting to 54.3%, already had information from their previous trip. 


In the first quarter of 2018, the total amount of nights spent in Georgia amounted to 5,722,346 and 37% of it was spent at friends/family homes. Approximately one third (32.8%) spent their time in hotels. Other types of accommodation are not as popular, with only 11.6% spent at own house and 8.8% spent in aparthotel/hostel. 


The total expense of international visitors reached GEL 1.4 billion and the average amount spent on one visit amounted to GEL 1,060. 

The largest share of expenditure, amounting to 29.6%, was on food and drink followed by accommodation, amounting to 22.2%. Moreover, an important share was attributed to cultural and recreation activities (18.3%) and shopping (12.1%). 

Popular Activities

The most common activities during visitors stay includes shopping (72%), local food and wine tasting (64.3%) and cultural and historical sightseeing (30.3%)

Tourist Satisfaction

Tourists were generally pleased with their visit with 51.6% extremely satisfied and 35.3% satisfied. The overall satisfaction rate was 4.4 (out of 5). 

By Anna Zhvania


Source: Georgian National Tourism Administration 

04 July 2018 14:50