Tourism is bouncing back in Antigua and Barbuda which reported a 7% increase in visitor arrivals in July.
The Caribbean country continues to record a “steady rebound” in tourist arrivals follwoing the coronavirus pandemic when its borders were forced to close. Some 24,673 travellers touched down in Antigua and Barbuda in July, according to data from the Ministry of Tourism. It marks an increase of 23,405 compared to the same period last year and the 2019 record of 23.031.
Tourism officials noted an influx of visitors from the US which contributed to the increase. The number of arrivals was 30% higher than in July 2019. There was a further 5% growth within the UK market where visitors stood at 5,650 compared to 5,378 in 2019. Arrivals from Canada rose by 1% while the Caribbean market fell by 19%.
The Antigua and Barbuda Hotels and Tourism Association recorded 63% occupancy across its members in July. The overall number of stay-over tourists between January and July was reported at 154,099. This shows a 91% rise compared to the same period last year, recorded at 80,509. It also marks an encouraging 16% narrowing of the gap between the same period in 2019 – at 184,465.
Following the promising news, the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority has launched a major new campaign and trade incentise designed to stimulate last-minute summer and autumn bookings in the UK. The message will feature on radio and in printed media. A trade incentive is also underway in conjunction with Elite Island Resorts, offering UK agents the opportunity to win a place on a megafam with bookings made by the end of October.
Antigua and Barbuda lifted its travel advisory at the end of August, to help passengers to travel smoothly. This includes the lifting of all Covid restrictions for passengers traveling by air, yacht or ferry. Cruise passengers are subject to the measures enforced by their retrospective cruise liners.