ForwardKeys’ latest analysis on Q1 inbound air travel in Brazil confirms the relevancy of casting a wider net during the pandemic – in terms of air connectivity and source market promotions. Meanwhile, the domestic travel market could be what keeps the ship afloat as new case numbers increase.

Top International markets in Brazil

When examining the latest ticketing data for confirmed arrivals in Brazil in January – March 2022, the total international arrivals are -54% compared to 2019.

The top three most resilient markets are Portugal, Spain, and the USA. Portugal (+40%) and Spain (+4%) with a reported growth versus pre-pandemic times.

The role and importance of the US and Portuguese market for the travel and tourism sector in Brazil are even more relevant for Rio Grande do Norte, where confirmed tickets for arrivals in Q1 2022 are 71% above pre-pandemic levels.

“Emprotur has always been in contact with DMCs and Tour Operators from Europe, especially Portugal. But, since the moment we received the news about the resumption of the route connecting our state to Lisbon, we doubled our efforts. It’s almost a one-to-one project with tour operators in Portugal and Spain to design the best strategies to attract travellers to our destinations. Essentially, this involves a strong relationship with tour operators and tactical co-op marketing campaigns to lift the awareness further,” says the Chairman of Emprotur Brazil, Bruno Reis.

Domestic Tourism, the saviour for Brazil during Covid-19

As witnessed in other parts of the world, the pent-up travel demand is real. As such when people can’t travel abroad, they look to explore their backyard.

This has been the case with keen Brazilian travellers ready to explore. Tickets confirmed for domestic arrivals in Brazil are currently down by just 3% while domestic arrivals to Rio Grande Do Norte is up by 41%.

“Our work is grounded on a data-driven threshold, focused on results, aiming at increase the tourist flow. We have set out customized strategies for each tour operator, retail agency, OTA, and airline within the domestic and international market. These players are key collaborators on the job of bringing back tourists to Rio Grande do Norte. Just to give an example of the consequences of our hard work, Natal, the capital of our State, was recently being ranked #7th by Trip Advisor’s Travelers’ Choice 2022 – it was the only destination from South America. That means our work of promoting the region is paying off,” adds Reis.

According to another recent study by ForwardKeys for Q1 of 2022 examining the most resilient destinations in Latin America, Brazil is placed at number 5, down by 54% compared to 2019 levels. However, 2022 results still show growth for Brazil as it was down by 70% in Q1 of 2021.

“What all this demonstrates, and highlights is that people want to travel, despite the pandemic. And that destinations like Ecuador and Colombia have only fared better only due to their open borders and tourist-friendly policies unlike the tighter restrictions in the rest of South America, including Brazil,” says Juan Gomez, Head of Market Intelligence at ForwardKeys.

Learn more about how the data at ForwardKeys can help tourism organisations and contact us.


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