Guyana Tourism

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Travel and tourism injected approximately G$62.6B directly into Guyana’s economy (2018)

The total number of foreign visitors was 286,732 in 2018 based on E/D cards, and the average per person per trip expenditure from the Bureau of Statistics VEMS was (G$222,216 / US$1,064) allows for a simple estimate of US$305 million in foreign visitor expenditures. A conservative estimate can be derived by recognizing that the VEMS provides information only on foreign visitors exiting the country via Cheddi Jagan International Airport. E/D Card data indicates that 81% of the visitors entered the country there, suggesting a total expenditure estimate from this subgroup of foreign visitors of US$250 million. This conservative estimate essentially sets the expenditure of foreign visitors entering the country at other points to zero. This approach stays strictly within the data that we have from the E/D cards and VEMS, but is conservative as the expenditure of people entering the country through points other than the CJIA cannot be zero.

A mid-point estimate can be derived by assuming that the foreign visitors entering/exiting via the Eugene Correia Airport and the land border crossings are mostly from Caribbean and South American countries, respectively. The VEMS data shows that these foreign visitors spend marginally less than the visitors from the US and other developed countries. The resulting estimate of foreign visitor spending is US$300 million. The Bureau of Statistics approved this approach on July 11, 2019.

Tourism is the 2nd largest Export Sector in Guyana after gold

Based on the Bank of Guyana Annual 2018 report and the estimated figure in 1, tourism is among the top five export earning sectors in Guyana:

  • Gold – USD766.8 M
  • Tourism – USD300 M
  • Rice – USD186.1 M
  • Bauxite – USD128.2 M
  • Timber – USD33.3 M

Export earning sectors contribute considerably to the economy in terms of economic value, employment, foreign exchange, etc. 228

Travel and tourism contributes to 22,000 jobs in Guyana (2018)

According to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC)*, the total contribution of travel and tourism to employment, including jobs indirectly supported by the sector was 22,000 jobs.

(*World Travel & Tourism Council (2018), Travel & Tourism Economic Impact 2018 Guyana)



The total contribution of travel and tourism to Guyana’s GDP is estimated to be 7.8% (2018)

This percentage was derived using the total estimated contribution of travel and tourism for 2018 and the total GDP of Guyana for 2018 (USD300M/USD3830B)*100




Guyana received 286,732 total visitors in 2018 (15.9% increase)

This figure was generated from data on the E/D cards collected from the four main ports of entry (CJIA, EFCIA, Lethem and Moleson Creek). Guyana is poised to attract 500,000+ visitors per annum as soon as 2025.




Guyana received 183,639 visitors for tourism alone in 2018 (21% increase)

This figure represents the total visitors who came for holiday for 2018 and was generated the same way as 5 above.





Based on the analysis of the VEMS survey of the Bureau of Statistics, the GTA estimates that the average expenditure per international traveller per visit is GY$222,216 (2018)

This estimate was derived from data collected throughout 2018 through the Visitor Exit Motivation Survey (VEMS), which is conducted daily by the Bureau of Statistics. The Bureau of Statistics approved the analysis that resulted in this calculation as well as the calculation itself on July 11, 2019.


Tourism contributes to Guyana’s Green State Agenda and all 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals

The United Nations World Tourism Organization’s (UNWTO) and their member states have formally recognized the actual and potential contribution of tourism to all 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)*. In addition, Guyana’s Green State Development Strategy: Vision 2040 makes reference to the goals particularly SDGs number 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, 13 and 15.

(*UNWTO (June 2018), Tourism for Development – Volume II,; and UNWTO and UNDP (May 2018), Tourism and the Sustainable Development Goals – Journey to 2030)

Guyana is recognised as the world’s #1 Ecotourism destination, Best is Sustainable Tourism, and a Top 10 Sustainable Destination (2019)

Sustainable tourism helps to protect and preserve our natural wonders, peoples’ culture and amazing wildlife. Guyana was recognised as the #1 Ecotourism destination and a Top 10 Sustainable Destination at ITB-Berlin in March 2019, the world’s largest travel trade show, and was recognised as the ‘Best is Sustainable Tourism’ at the 9th Annual LATA Achievement Awards in the United Kingdom in June 2019.



Travel and tourism investment in Guyana is projected to increase to GY$7.7B by 2028

According to WTTC*, travel and tourism investment is expected to increase by GY$7.7B by 2028, 2.9% of total investment.

(*World Travel & Tourism Council (2018), Travel & Tourism Economic Impact 2018 Guyana)

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