BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (27 August, 2014) – The Caribbean recorded a rise in visitor arrivals during the first half of this year, keeping pace with the world average. The region enjoyed a 4.3 per cent increase during the first six months of the 2014, much in line with the world average of 4.7 per cent, the director of research and information technology at the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), Winfield Griffith, announced tonight on the CTO’s television programme, Destination Caribbean.
Mr. Griffith revealed that just under 14 million long-stay tourists visited the Caribbean between January and June, with nearly half this number ( 6.87 million) coming from the United States of America compared to 6.61 million during the same period in 2013. This represents a 3.9 per cent rise in arrivals from the US market.
“There is enough evidence to suggest that there is growing economic confidence in the region’s biggest neighbour and this is releasing much pent-up travel demand caused by a long recessionary period”. Mr. Griffith said.
The CTO research head stated that just 21 countries in the region were able to breakdown their tourist arrivals by destination in time for the report. From the most recent figures it was clear that more Europeans and Canadians are gravitating to the region showing increases of 6.0% and 4.3% respectively.
For the winter period represented by the first four months of the year, at least five countries reported double digit growth. These destinations continue to power through the current summer showing signs of doing exceptionally well this year.
Griffith also announced that the cruise sector enjoyed an 8 per cent increase in passenger arrivals to reach 13.1 million after the first two quarters of 2014.