BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS – The Barbados-based Caribbean Tourism Organisation (CTO) is reporting a six percent decline in stayover visitors to St. Kitts for the first two months of 2016 compared to the same period in 2015.
CTO also reports a 7 percent decrease in cruise ship passengers to St. Kitts and Nevis for the first six months of 2016 compared to the same period in 2015.
Only figures for January and February 2016 are reported for St. Kitts in the CTO’s recently released Performance of the Tourism Industry Report released at the recent CTO in 2016.
According to the CTO, stayover visitors to St. Kitts for the first two months of 2016 were recorded at 21,196, down 6.1 percent for the same period in 2015. The figures do not include arrivals at the Vance Amory International Airport in Nevis.
CTO also reported that of the 3,780 stayover passengers arriving in St. Kitts from the Caribbean, South America and the Rest of the World were mixed. 3,087 stayover visitors arrived from the Caribbean, up 2.1 percent; South America, down, 10 percent and 532, up 8.4 percent.
CTO said cruise passengers to St. Kitts and Nevis also dropped for the first six months in 2016 compared to the same period in 2015.
CTO also reported that 524,546 cruise passengers arrived in St. Kitts between January and June, a drop of 7.1 percent when compared to the same period in 2015.
Stayover arrivals from the United States market were recorded as 13,000, down 11.4 percent; arrivals from Canada rose 10.7 percent to 2,142 stayover passengers. Europe recorded zero growth at 2,274 passengers, while other stayover passengers from other destinations rose 2.4 percent to 3,780.
Stayovers from the UK (1,773) and the German (74) markets dropped 3.9 percent and 11.9 percent respectively. Stayovers from France (74) rose 37 percent; Italy (28), 47.4 percent, The Netherlands (27), 208 percent; Sweden (30), 50 percent; Spain (36), 500 percent and others (247), 7.9 percent.
CTO said international tourist visits to the Caribbean in 2016 indicated continuous growth throughout the year. In fact, the Caribbean posted its seventh year of unbroken growth.
“When the information received from the destinations was aggregated along with Caribbean Tourism Organization’s estimates, the region received an estimated 29.3 million international tourist arrivals, compared to 28.2 million in 2015. This corresponds to 1.1 million more arrivals or a 4.2% increase.
Among the destinations, tourist arrivals showed uneven growth. Of the 28 destinations reporting data for varying periods between January and December, 22 recorded increases ranging from modest to 17.5% (the Turks & Caicos Islands), while the remaining six destinations had losses between -5.8% (Curaçao) and -25.6% (Suriname). Other notable countries are Belize, Cuba, Guyana, and Bermuda with commendable double-digit growth rates of 13.0%, 11.7%, 11.1% and 10.7%, respectively. Strong growth, in excess of 5%, was realized in eight other destinations: Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, Barbados, Dominican Republic, Martinique, Montserrat, St. Maarten, and St. Vincent & The Grenadines.