According to the latest data gathered from tourism companies by Riga Tourism Development Bureau (RTDB) number of tourists visiting Riga in March and Easter weekend (2010) has increased substantially. Major transport companies, hotels and museums have reported a sharp upraise of passengers, visitors and those seeking accommodation in Riga during March and Easter weekend.
“Gathered data confirms that both LIVE RĪGA campaigns have delivered very good results. LIVE RĪGA has substantially increased the level of recognition for Riga abroad, which is a crucial part of overall promotion of tourism both in Riga and Latvia. And latest data from February and March reflects first success of LIVE RĪGA activities so far. These results encourage us to continue our approach to the campaign that aims introducing Riga internationally as an attractive Nordic metropolis”, says LIVE RĪGA representative Antra Laumane.
Number of passengers has increased
In comparison to the same period in year 2009, Latvian national airline airBaltic has reported a staggering 39% increase of passengers (total of 222 472) travelling from Riga in March 2010. During Easter weekend (April 2-5) The Riga International Airport (RIX) provided services to more than 15,000 passengers a day which is the largest number of passengers passing through the airport per day in the history of the RIX. Data published by the Airport reveals an overall increase of 25% that has resulted in a total of 67,394 passengers passing through Riga Airport in the Easter weekend. In March 2010, the Airport provided services to 344,602 passengers – 25.4% more than in the same month last year (274,681 passengers). Whereas the airport in Tallinn, has experienced a 3.8% decrease of passengers if to compare the same data in March
2009 reporting 109 280 passengers in March 2010. The Estonian shipping company Tallink Grupp has transported 45 470 passengers between Riga and Stockholm in March 2010 – 63.2% more than during the same month last year.
Hotels and Museums
Several hotels have reported a notable increase in room occupancy during the Easter holidays. For example the Reval Hotel Latvia had an occupancy rate of 45.53% between April 2-5, as opposed to 21.1% during the Easter holiday last year. The Reval Hotel Elizabete had an occupancy rate of 54.7% (as opposed to 17.85% last year), and the Reval Hotel Rīdzene posted occupancy numbers of 31.33%, compared
to 28.42% in 2009. 2 The Hotel Bergs reported an occupancy rate of 45.93% in March 2010, as opposed to 40.07% last year. During the Easter weekend (April 2-5), the hotel had occupancy of 57.9%, compared to 26.31% during April 10-13 in 2009. The Albert Hotel also has experienced a substantial increase – up from 26% last year to 53.6% between April 1-5 this year. The Islande Hotel had occupancy of 51.58% in March 2010 (26.89% last March) and 43.38% during the Easter period (28.46% in 2009).
Museums also are proud to report the increased number of visitors. The Latvian National Museum of Art has registered 7,756 visitors in March – 21% more than in the same month in 2009. The Museum of the History of Riga and Navigation and the Cross Gallery in the Riga Dome were visited by 4,251 people this March, or 8% more than in March of last year. The Riga Motor Museum, too, reported an increase in visitor numbers of around 20% in March of this year.
ON THE RIGA TOURISM DEVELOPMENT BUREAU (RTDB)
On 28 October 2009, the “Riga Tourism Development Bureau” (RTDB) foundation was registered in the Register of Enterprises of the Republic of Latvia. It was established by the Riga City Council, the national airline “airBaltic”, the Latvian Hotel and Restaurant Association (LVRA) and the Latvian Travel Agents’ Association (ALTA). RTDB works on promoting tourism and on marketing abroad what Riga has to offer tourists. 70% of RTDB’s voting rights are held by the Riga City Council, while the remaining founders – the national airline “airBaltic”, LVRA and ALTA – each hold 10%. LIVE RĪGA motto: “Good for Riga Residents - Good for Tourists!”.