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The state of Yucatan has recorded a historic number of arrivals to its Merida International Airport (MID) during August 2022, with 278,854 passengers representing a 4.9 percent increase from its previous record in December 2019.

The data was provided by Grupo Aeroportuario del Sureste (ASUR) and represents a considerable increase in passenger traffic. Earlier in September, the Ministry of Tourism for the state of Yucatan (Sefotur) announced that the Mexican carrier, Viva Aerobus, will have a new operational base at MID beginning in December 2022, which will generate almost 600 new jobs as well as increase the region’s connectivity.

The work done by Sefotur has also created a Hispanic heritage route connecting the Maya sites of Tikal in Guatemala via direct flights to the colonial cities of Guanajuato, the cradle of Mexico’s independence.

“Currently we are not only recovering, but we are already seeing growth, that is, we are already exceeding many of the indicators that we had before the pandemic, as in the case of passenger arrivals, which is showing record and historic numbers,” said Michelle Fridman Hirschshe, Minister of Tourism for the state of Yucatan, in a press release statement.

Cultural tourism is a core component of the state of Yucatan’s offering, and Chichen Itza remained the most visited tourist spot during the 2022 summer vacation period, receiving 469,525 tourists during the months of July and August, according to reports from the Board of Trustees of the Units of Cultural and Tourist Services of the State of Yucatan (Cultur). Other archaeological sites, such as Uxmal and Ek Balam, also saw similar numbers in visitors.

The state of Yucatan has been focused on post-pandemic economic and tourism recovery this year, with an increase in direct flights announced from Toronto, Miami, Dallas, Houston, Oakland/San Francisco, and Tijuana/San Diego, which brings the destination’s airlift recovery beyond 100 percent when compared to pre-Covid flights. Sefotur, along with the region’s private sector, has been working to encourage travel to the state and has also reported that the Merida airport has received 1.8 million international and national passengers from January to August of this year.

Fridman Hirschshe added that the data reflects a positive recovery for the state of Yucatan, and is the result of several short and long-term campaigns Sefotur has been carrying out in strategic markets, such as the 365 days in Yucatan and 365 flavors of Yucatan campaigns that have positioned the state’s cultural, tourist and gastronomic traditions in front of those interested in experiencing what the region has to offer.

Sefotur has also recently announced that it will be hosting Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants ceremony in the city of Merida from Nov 11-13, within the framework of Los Sabores de Yucatan, a gastronomic festival that will take place in different areas of the state, and will include dinner pairings, gastronomic samples and more activities around the flavors and colors of Yucatan.

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