Jeju Island, one of South Korea's most well-known tourist destinations, on Sunday reported a spike in departure tax this year caused by greater foreign visitor traffic.
The provincial government said it collected 46.7 percent more departure tax from outbound international travelers in the 10 months of this year, compared with the same period in 2015.
The increase is welcome news since the tax goes into the resort island tourism promotion fund that can make Jeju more attractive to visitors down the line.
The money is used to make repairs to tourism-related infrastructure, build new facilities and operate tourist-centered businesses that can generate profit for the island.
It said as of late October, total departure tax reached 11.82 billion won ($10 million), which is significantly more than the 8.06 billion won collected the year before for the same period.
The island levies 10,000 won on both foreigners and South Koreans leaving the island for foreign destinations. Official data showed that the number of people who left the country from Jeju stood at over 3.14 million in the checked period, up 40.9 percent from 2.23 million tallied for the previous year.
Of these, more than 90 percent were Chinese nationals, with South Koreans accounting for 3 percent of the total.
Related to the increase in taxes collected by departing people, total earnings for the tourism promotion fund stood at 24.5 billion won, an increase of 11.4 percent from 22 billion won the year before.
Jeju Island administrators said at the current pace the fund's intake, including earnings from its casinos, could hit 30.9 billion won. (Yonhap)