Stay-over guests soar to new heights

| 03/10/2017 | 0 Comments

(CNS Business): The Cayman Islands Department of Tourism’s promotional and marketing efforts continue to pay dividends, reflected in record-breaking summer statistics for air arrivals. After 77,030 visitors arrived during July and August, officials said that figures are significantly outpacing projections, making it evermore likely that the total figure by year-end will top 400,000 tourists. August 2017 had the highest arrival figure for that month in recorded history, up 9.92% over last year, while the July numbers also beat 2016 passenger arrivals by 6.83%.

Tourism Minister Moses Kirkconnell said the positive numbers demonstrated that the strategies government implemented to boost the slower periods were working well.

“I expected to see an uptick in arrivals for July and August from activities such as the Summer Only in Cayman and Culinary Promotions targeted at the USA, but actual results have surpassed all expectations. This is an excellent achievement for the destination,” the minister stated.

During both July and August, Cayman had more arrivals from the US and Canada, but the most significant growth was the Latin America market, which was up 23.88% for July and 51.76% for August.

This strong performance follows an overall increase of 12.84% for the month of June, equating to 115,759 visitors in just 90 days.

“We are currently trending almost 5% higher than where we were this time last year, which in specific numbers
equates to 13,495 additional visitors year to date. I commended the Department of Tourism and the islands’ private sector partners for their unified, innovative and consistent efforts to promote the Cayman Islands as the destination of choice for a magnificent vacation.”

David Wight, the newly elected PPM member for George Town West who was appointed as Kirkconnell’s councillor, said the numbers also mean more business for taxi drivers, tour operators and tourist attractions.

“To meet growing demand additional taxi driver and tour operator permits have recently been approved, creating more employment for Caymanians,” he said. “The outstanding growth in stay-over arrivals is helping to offset a decline in cruise calls, largely due to inclement weather. As we head into the winter season, cruise numbers are expected to rise and the trend in positive air arrivals is expected to continue.”

A decrease in the number of ships calling led to a drop in visiting passengers from 108,447 last July to 101,513 this year, and in August the numbers declined on 2016 by almost 11,000, though the numbers are still higher than average for the last decade. More than one million cruise visitors have already visited, which means the yearly total is likely to match 2016 by the end of the year.

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Category: Stay-over tourism, Tourism

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