August Tourism Figures Show Increased Arrivals

September 30, 2016

The Minister of Tourism, Transport and Municipalities Michael Fahy released some figures from the ‘Tourism Measures August 2016 Report’ — which is produced by the Bermuda Tourism Authority — with the Minister saying he is “extremely impressed with and encouraged by these August results.”

“The report showed that the total number of leisure visitors to the island for the month of August was up from 80,267 in August 2014 to 87,646 for August 2015 to 94,555 in August 2016,” the Ministry said.

BTA Bermuda Tourism Authority generic 2016 TC 908423

“The biggest increase in category of visitor was cruise ship visitors which went from 59,562 in August 2014 to 70,854 in August 2016. Air vacation and leisure visitors increased from 20,705 in August 2014 to 23,701 in August 2016.

“Out of the total number of air visitors to Bermuda in August 2016, the most common purpose of their trip to Bermuda was Vacation and Leisure which made up 77 per cent of the total, while 12 per cent of air visitors were visiting friends and relatives, and business travel made up 10 per cent [one per cent stated 'other' as the purpose of their trip].

“Also of interest, the number of air visitors to Bermuda who visited the island for business-related purposes increased from 2,714 in August 2014, to 2,977 in August 2015 to 3,042 in August 2016.

“The number of air visitors who visited Bermuda as a destination wedding locale increased as well from 234 in August 2015 to 338 in August 2016.

“One of the largest increases in total air arrivals came from the US, with 20,926 coming to Bermuda from the US in August 2014 and 24,242 coming to Bermuda from the US in 2016. Also, there was a 46.7 per cent increase year over year in the total number of air arrivals from Asia for the month of August.

“There was an increase in hotel occupancy from 67.3 per cent in August 2014 to 71 per cent in August 2015 to 76.9 per cent in August 2016.”

Minister Fahy said, “I am extremely impressed with and encouraged by these August results. It really bodes well for next year with the America’s Cup getting underway and provides us with strong momentum heading into the off-season in Bermuda.

“There is much still to do but these numbers are certainly an indication that Bermuda is getting traction once again with travelers.

“I want to congratulate the Bermuda Tourism Authority for their efforts to attract visitors to our shores – efforts which are clearly paying off.”

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Comments (17)

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  1. Onion Juice says:

    Good to hear but we’re way below our competition to the South of us.

    • The Original Truth™ says:

      From your comment it’s clear to me why you are a PLP supporter. Nothing really analytical put forth just a comparison to the competition South of us. We will never compete with that market because we’ve priced ourselves out of it. If you want to compare apples with apples use places like Côte d’Azur. You will have the same response but at least it will be more justifiable.

      An analytical non zealot of either party would ask……

      How many of the cruise passengers actually left the ship and spent considerable amounts on island?

      How many of the air arrivals came on BTA promoted sales and not at full price?

      How many of the air arrivals from Asia are actually leaving the island and how many are staying until they get a work permit?

      • Yay, Americas Cup! says:

        No sewage balls on Cote Azur beaches.

        • The Original Truth™ says:

          There’s lots of bare bodies on Côte d’Azur beaches. Not my cup of tea but this to others is just another reason why their beaches are better. Some people will fork out a lot more to avoid a tan line.

    • Jus' Wonderin' says:

      And there’s no way we guys will ever catch up…we’re outpriced but not outcultured, etc.

      • The Original Truth™ says:

        We traded our culture many years ago for theirs. We are just an expensive knock off now.

    • OMG!!!!!!!! says:

      You’re so right and this is only their June figures.

      June 2014
      The Bahamas – 725,005 arrivals by Air.
      – 2,590,038 arrivals by Sea

      June 2016
      The Bahamas – 781,770 arrivals by Air
      – 2,554,191 arrivals by Sea

      We need to send a rep their fast to see what computer system they have in place because the customs lines take to long and we only had 23,701 arrivals by Air for August 2016. Imagine if we had 400,000+ a month.

      • OMG!!!!!!!! says:


      • Still Crazy After All These Years says:

        But where would we put them? Not enough accomodations here.

      • The Original Truth™ says:

        Bahamas numbers have nothing to do with customs lines. We lack the affordable fun for all ages that Bahamas has and that’s why they have the numbers we don’t. There’s more to do on the cruise ships than on land. Trying to only attract one market segment is a flawed strategy that only worked for us in the past because of lack of technology at the time.

  2. mixitup says:

    Great news! This is finally trending the right way… The real test will be the Sept, Oct numbers as history shows that after Labour day the numbers drop significantly.. Keep the momentum going!

  3. Terry says:

    Love it.

  4. somuchless says:

    I bet they want a bonus.

  5. bluwater says:

    Some people owe Bill Hanbury an apology.

    • The Original Truth™ says:

      There’s nothing to apologies for. The majority of the increase comes from bigger floating cities. Most of those that arrive on these floating cities spend very little on shore.

  6. hotcrossbuns says:

    Where are the calls for Hanbury’s head.

  7. Jonathan Land Evans says:

    It is certainly good to see the figures heading in a better direction, but it should be borne in mind that the figures still compare pretty badly to how things were decades ago. For example, the hotel occupancy rate of 76.9% for August (a peak month) is not much higher than the average ANNUAL occupancy rate (i.e. including the off-season months) that we attained back in the late 1960s (73%).Moreover, there were many more hotel rooms in those days. One also wonders how much of the current resurgence is attributable to discounted room-rates, and therefore whether it is sustainable.