August visitors increase 10%

| 30/09/2019 | 20 Comments
Cayman News Service

(CNS): The record-breaking tourism numbers continued this summer for overnight guests. After a great June and July, August completed the season with an increase of 9.99% on last year, making it the best August on record with 37,356 people staying overnight in Cayman. The total of overnight guests for the year is already at 369,650, an increase of 10.68% on 2018 and more than the entire annual numbers for all years between 2000 and 2013.

“As a ministry we set out to flatten seasonality and to ensure growth of the economic benefit of tourism for all, preliminary estimates show total visitor spend from January to August 2019 at approximately US$663 million,” Tourism Minister Moses Kirkconnell said in a release. “August arrivals to the destination have demonstrated that we are accomplishing our goals with August’s contribution marking continued record stay-over tourism performance.”

The record performance was supported by the airlines; Air Canada extended services from Toronto in August, and Cayman Airways continued new market developments, including Denver, despite the challenges the national flag carrier is facing with its two brand new Boeing 737 Max 8’s grounded.

In order to maintain visitor numbers, the Department of Tourism has launched its annual “Fall Only in Cayman” promotion, which focuses on the wellness products available beyond the sand and sea. Visitors are being encouraged to “find their peace in paradise” through organic and healthy dining, fitness classes, spa treatments and more, officials said.

Meanwhile, cruise arrivals for the same period declined 6%. Officials said in the release that the “cruise passenger volume is of concern given the consistent decline for the past four months”. The statistics show that in August 2019 there was decline of 7.5%.

But despite the drop in numbers, largely due to cruise ships redirecting back to islands impacted by the 2017 hurricanes, the spend across the tourism sector remains high, as the increase in the far more lucrative overnight tourism numbers and the per capita spend of stay-over guests outweighs the drop in cruise passengers.

This has been born out over and over again recently on social media. As those involved in tourism debate the pros and cons of the port project, many operators are stating that they are now doing much better with overnight guests or when more boutique style cruise ships call. That is because guests on those lines tend to book direct tours or the cruise ships provide higher margins than those given by Carnival and Royal Caribbean, the companies partnering with the government on the proposed dock.

The numbers are nevertheless competitive with most of the cruise arrival statistics going back to 2000. Up to the end of August, with the last four months still to go, more than 1.2 million passengers had already called on Cayman and the annual total remains on track to be the third or fourth best year since records began.

Since the full visitor numbers on the DoT website here.

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Category: Business, Tourism

Comments (20)

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  1. BeaumontZodecloun says:

    Do we ever, as a group, have anything positive to contribute?

    Put another way, if a person brings a problem, they might drag along a solution. You know, so we can talk about it and stuff.

    Do you think anyone in Cabinet reads this? I do.

    What can it hurt to be constructive?

    • Anonymous says:

      So Big Beau, here is something constructive: Stayover tourism continues to grow so we don’t need a new port to add thousands of people to Seven Mile Beach every day. All the additional cruise ship people will lower the quality of the experience for the high paying stayover visitors. Furthermore, all these stayover tourists contribute more and more to Mount Trashmore every day so let’s solve THE DUMP problem once and for all. Tough political decisions must be taken.

      • Anonymous says:

        I agree with your comment in theory.

        DoT needs to pick a lane and stick to it.

        Dabbling in both stay over and cruise tourism is counter productive.

        Also – if someone in the Cabinet does read these comments, it sure as heck doesn’t show.

        Welcome to The Garbage Islands!! Here’s your plastic toy from China, a post card of how it used to be here, and your straw to sip your kool-aid.

    • Anonymous says:

      August visitors increase 10% because those whom are regular visitors to the islands can’t justify the increase of air/ hotel the rest of the year, so came during low season.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Does anyone believe anything DoT puts out any more? Simple fact – due to Trump’s clamp down on travel to Cuba we’re enjoying a boom in ‘stayover’ arrivals who in reality are just transit passengers. Under Obama numerous US companies started making plans to invest in Cuba, they know Trump is on the way out and are sending their people over by this route to pick up the pieces.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Stop importing poverty from other Caribbean islands and the far east. They come from crime infested shitholes and bring it with them.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Air arrivals might be up but Cruise is down almost 8% in August.
    6 of the last 7 months have shown a decline in cruise tourism.
    There is no bluff, without cruise berthing we will keep losing tourism

  5. Anonymous says:

    jamaicans? fellow realize the amount of jamaican’s on this island?

    • Anonymous says:

      Whats that got to do with tourist numbers? Visiting Jamaicans are welcome.

      • Anonymous says:

        You are all one people Caymanians and Jamaicans. You came on the same ship and same trip 200 years ago. One love people. Learn to live together.

  6. Anonymous says:

    With every new visitor the Dump grows taller. How much waste each visitor generates per day? Until 21st century waste management system is implemented, each and every visitor is unwelcome.

    • Anonymous says:

      Better at the dump than at sea (which is what cruise ships continue to be found guilty of doing).

    • Willy says:

      Did you even read the article before this one? The population is exploding! I think that is more of an issue for the dump….

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