Some 354,000 visitors arrived in Israel in April 2012, 19% more than in April 2011 and 12% more than in April 2010, Israel’s record tourism year. The number of incoming tourists reached 296,000 in April 2012, 13% more than during the same period last year and 11% more than in April 2010.

“The consistent increases in the number of visitors entering Israel contributes to the national economy and increases employment,” said Tourism Minister Stas Misezhnikov, who attributed some of the influx to the Tourism Ministry’s marketing and improving the tourism infrastructure in Israel.

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Based on Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics data released Wednesday, more than a million visitors arrived in the first third of 2012, 6% more than during the same period in 2011 and 4% more than in 2010. A similar increase was recorded among tourists during Jan-April 2012, with about 933,000 tourists visiting Israel, 4% more than the record set for the same period last year.

There was an increase on those arriving by air with 793,000 entries during Jan-April 2012 (3% more than during the same period last year). About 140,000 tourists crossed into Israel by land, 8% more than the same period last year. Given the political instability in Egypt, there was a significant increase in arrivals through the Taba border crossing, with 42,600 tourists, an increase of 30% compared to the same period last year.

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