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(CNS Business): Despite the continued struggle for many in the tourism business, the number of visitors to the Cayman Islands continues to climb. In September this year air passenger arrivals increased by 7% compared to last year, increasing the probability that Cayman is likely to have record breaking year for overnight visitors. The month also reflected well for the cruise industry, with a 12.6% increase on the number of passengers arriving in September 2011. While many local tourism stakeholders remain concerned over the failure of government to get a cruise berthing project off the ground, 2012 could turn out to be one of the better years for cruise arrivals since Hurricane Ivan, even without a pier.
According to the latest figures from the Department of Tourism, 77,909 passengers docked in George Town during September, 8702 more people than arrived during the same period in 2011. Third quarter cruise arrival figures are much better than last year with an increase of almost 7%. Although 2011 was once of the worst years for the cruise sector in Grand Cayman, 2012 is well on track to be the best year for the last five.
The air arrival growth, a trend which began towards the end of 2009, remains steady and last month’s boost to figures keeps the overnight guests on track for another great year. In total 10,678 people flew into Grand Cayman last month compared to 9,977 in September 2011. So far this year, air arrivals are up more than 3%, keeping 2012 on track to be a record breaking year. If the percentage of growth continues for the last quarter, 2012 could be the best year for Cayman Islands tourism since 2001.
Visitors are still predominately coming to Cayman from North America with the United States accounting for over 80% of our guests last month and 6.9% from Canada. Meanwhile, there was an increase in September of passengers arriving from Europe and the UK of over 9%.
For details of tourism arrivals visit www.caymanislands.ky.
The comments posted do not necessarily reflect the views of CNS or any individual staff member. All comments are posted subject to approval by CNS. Read more
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