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US tourism to Israel in 2023 'extremely encouraging,' says Tourism Ministry

12% more American tourists arrived in Israrel during first half of 2023 than in first 6 months of 2019, pre-COVID

Illustrative - Tourists visit the Temple Mount in Jerusalem's Old City, January 3, 2023. (Photo: Jamal Awad/Flash90)

The number of tourists to Israel from the United States hit a new peak, with 12% more American travelers arriving in the Jewish state in the first six months of 2023 than in the first half of 2019.

“These statistics are extremely encouraging,” said Eyal Carlin, Israeli Commissioner of Tourism to North America.

Since the time Israel opened its borders two years ago following the COVID pandemic, “people are traveling in droves, and we expect 2023 to be a banner year for Israel,” Carlin added.

Tourism from the U.S. remained high this year, despite a dramatic heat wave in June and ongoing protests against the proposed judicial overhaul, according to a recent report.

The large number of U.S. tourists to Israel is evidence that U.S. residents have a strong affinity for the Jewish state, however, the Israeli tourism sector has struggled to rebound from the lean years since COVID and the total number of visitors continues to fall short of pre-pandemic years.

Israeli officials project that only 3.9 million tourists will travel to Israel this year, compared to a record 4.55 million people who visited in 2019.

According to the Tourism Ministry, the overall number of tourists to Israel in June decreased by over 40,000 people.

Carlin said Israel was “heavily investing in tourism,” and plans to increase the number of hotel rooms and resorts, with “new food, wine and spirits destinations," along with "many outdoor adventure opportunities, as well as arts and culture experiences.”

Read more: TOURISM

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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