The country saw an increase of nearly 5% in March and will offer a six-month free visa period from 1 May to more than 30 countries.
Tourism Development Minister John Amaratunga said: “We will start granting a six-month free visa period from May 1, 2019 for selected countries during our lean period to boost tourist arrivals.”
“As the next step of this program, we are planning on setting up a permanent system at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) to issue visa on-arrival, like in many other countries. We believe this would be a major breakthrough in attracting more visitors.”
Free visa entry will be granted to nationals of the UK, the EU, the US, Australia, South Korea, Canada, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia and New Zealand.
It may be expanded to include major market China and could be extended permanently depending on its success over the six month period.