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Hotel industry employed 70 fewer in Q3

The Island’s hotel industry employed 2,579 people, some 70 fewer workers, in the third quarter of last year.

And tourists spent some $1.8 million less in the third quarter compared to 2011.

Retail sales in the quarter also slipped, according to the Quarterly Bulletin of Statistics released yesterday.

Air arrivals during the third quarter of 2012, however, showed a slight increase of 1.2 percent compared to the same quarter of 2011.

Despite the negative impact on arrivals by Hurricane Leslie in September, a total of 80,852 visitors arrived on the Island, up from 79,917 a year ago.

Visitors from the US edged up 0.3 percent compared to the third quarter of 2011. Arrivals from Canada grew by 13.6 percent to 7,636 visitors on account of a spike in visitors from the province of Ontario. In contrast, visitors from the United Kingdom and all other countries fell by 2.4 percent and 0.2 percent, respectively, the Bulletin said.

A breakdown of visitors by intended type of accommodation revealed that resort hotels benefited directly from the increased arrivals, registering a 6.7 percent rise in occupancy. In contrast, guest houses and housekeeping accommodations saw the largest reductions in bookings of 20.4 percent and 13.8 percent, respectively.

Visitors staying at small hotels and cottage colonies also declined by 3.5 percent. The number of guests staying at private homes fell by 1.4 percent.

Tourists arriving on the Island by air spent an estimated $119.2 million during the third quarter of 2012. This represented a decrease of $1.8 million year-over-year and a 2.6 percent decline in average spending per visitor.

Visitors spent 3.1 percent less on accommodations and food.

However, there was a rise of 5.1 percent in spending on shopping, entertainment, transport and other services due primarily to a 9 percent increase in outlays for transportation services.

During the third quarter of 2012, the number of cruise ship passengers to Bermuda fell 4.3 percent. There were 69 cruise ship visits carrying 179,124 passengers compared to 187,240 who visited in 2011. The dip in cruise arrivals was attributed to six less cruise ship calls to the Island during the quarter.

Expenditure by cruise visitors on local goods and services, including entertainment, souvenirs, sightseeing, sports activities and transportation stood at $37.9 million. This level of spending was 2.6 percent or $1 million less than the spending level reached during the same quarter in 2011.

Total sales revenue for the hotel industry fell 5.5 percent to $78.4 million in the third quarter of 2012. Resort hotels earned $3.9 million less in sales this quarter, due primarily to fewer business and convention visitors during the period. Cottage colonies and small hotels experienced declines of 25.5 percent and 1.7 percent in sales, respectively. All other tourist accommodations collected 17 percent less in sales receipts.

Receipts from room sales accounted for 60 percent of all gross receipts. However, revenue from this source abated by roughly seven percent. Food sales and alcohol sales garnered less revenue as well, falling 11.6 percent and 6.6 percent, respectively.

There were 2,579 workers employed in the hotel industry at the end of July 2012. This represented 70 fewer workers compared to last year.

Hotels employed 2,123 workers which was 69 less than the same period in 2011.

Residents declared $17.7 million on overseas purchases of goods during the third quarter of 2012. The total value of goods declared was $870,000 less than a year ago. This represented a 4.7 percent decline in overseas expenditure. Outlays on computer hardware and software fell 33.4 percent. Expenditure on household items, furniture and appliances, and tapes and CDs decreased roughly 29 percent. Among the other commodity groupings, the value of resident declarations also contracted for tools, machinery and parts (-13.1 percent), jewellery and watches (-12.8 percent), and electronic & photographic equipment (-11.1 percent). In contrast, spending on clothing and footwear edged up 0.5 percent to $8.8 million and accounted for half of total overseas purchases by residents.

Retail sales for the third quarter of 2012 totalled $262.2 million. This represented a $6.6 million decrease when compared to the third quarter of 2011. Among the seven retail sectors, building material stores experienced the largest decrease of 13.7 percent due to fewer contract projects. Consumer demand for apparel dipped 3.4 percent as consumers faced fewer weekend shopping days. Despite longer opening hours, service stations reported lower fuel sales per litre during the period resulting in a 2.1 percent fall in revenue.

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Published January 15, 2013 at 8:00 am (Updated January 14, 2013 at 7:26 pm)

Hotel industry employed 70 fewer in Q3

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