Caribbean Tourism Posts Double Digits in First Quarter of 2019
Spurred on by a 24 percent rise in arrivals from the United States, the Caribbean recorded a healthy 12 percent increase in tourist arrivals during the first quarter of 2019, according to statistics compiled by the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO).
In updating the media on the region’s performance at a news conference this morning hosted at the Wyndham New Yorker Hotel as part of Caribbean Week New York (#CWNY2019), CTO chairman Dominic Fedee revealed that between January and March this year there were 9.1 million international tourist trips to the region, up by 970,000 over the corresponding period last year.
The arrivals boom extended to the cruise sector as well, with a single quarter record 10.7 million cruise passengers visits, an increase of 9.9 percent or 900,000 more arrivals when compared to the same period in 2018.
Due to its bullish economy, high consumer confidence and the strength of the U.S. dollar against global currencies, the United States was the strongest performing market during the first quarter, with 4.5 million tourist visits, while Canada’s 1.5 million visits to the Caribbean represented a strong four percent rise.
On the other hand, the performance of the European market was less encouraging, with arrivals up marginally by 0.6 percent. Of the 1.6 million tourist arrivals from Europe during the first quarter, 300,000 came from the United Kingdom (up 0.1 percent), while arrivals from Germany fell by 8.1 percent to 200,000 tourist visits. The Caribbean (up 1.8 percent) and Latin American (up 1.6 percent) markets also recorded growth, although at a much slower pace that the major markets.
The overall healthy growth in both stayover and cruise visits, coupled with a 1.4 percent rise in available airline seats during first quarter of 2019 -bringing to 12.4 million the number of international seats attracted to the region during the period -the CTO is bullish in its forecast for the year, predicting an eight percent to nine percent increase in tourist arrivals, along with 5.5 percent to 6.5 percent growth in cruise arrivals.
Caribbean Week New York
Caribbean Week New York is the largest regional tourism activity in the New York area. Artistes, performers, celebrity chefs, the Diaspora, investors and other strategic partners join government officials and the media for a week of festivities designed to raise awareness of the Caribbean’s diverse tourism industry and provide opportunities for member destinations to promote their individual products and services, participate in meetings, seminars and other business development activities to further enhance the Caribbean brand, and provide updates and critical support to travel agents and the media who influence key travel demographics.
Caribbean Week is supported by Academy Engraving, American Express, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Bedessee Sports, The British Virgin Islands, Bloomingdale’s, Blue Waters, Calabash Cove Resort & Spa, Cayman Islands, Cititech Solutions, Coyaba Beach Resort, Cool Tech Air Conditioning and Refrigeration LLC, Delta Airlines, Dominica, Doctor’s Cave, Four Season Resort Nevis, Grenada, Jamaica, James Beard Foundation, JetBlue, Lightspeed Reservation system, Martinique, Ocean Terrace Inn, Round Hill Hotel and Villas, Sandals, St. Vincent and The Grenadines, Saint Lucia, The Wyndham New Yorker Hotel, Travel+Leisure, Williams-Sonoma.