Tourist numbers expected to be 56% of pre-pandemic figures
The number of visitors arriving in Bermuda will be just over half the figure seen in 2019, Vance Campbell, the tourism minister, said yesterday.
He told MPs that while the projected tally for the year was 56 per cent of pre-pandemic levels, the industry was showing “momentum”.
Mr Campbell said that in the first eight months of the year, the island saw 98,000 air visitors.
He told the House of Assembly that spending per air passenger was up nearly a third, 32 per cent, on 2019 levels.
Mr Campbell said: “While we are seeing growth year-over-year, we have not yet achieved the volumes of 2019.
“Tourism Bermuda has seen momentum build after two years of a decimated global tourism industry.
“The Bermuda Tourism Authority projects Bermuda’s year-end visitor volume to be approximately 56 per cent of 2019.
“Some tourism measures have exceeded 2019 figures. Per-person spending by air leisure visitors was up by 32 per cent this summer.
“This means that today’s leisure visitor provides more value to the economy.
“More is being spent in Bermuda’s hotels, shops and businesses at $2,030 per person than they did individually in 2019, when each air leisure visitor spent $1,534 on average.
“The average length of stay year to date shows that Bermuda’s leisure visitors are booking vacations that are 11 per cent longer than in 2019.”
He said a 13 per cent growth rate in the vacation rental sector compared to 2019 had been a “shot in the arm” for people letting-out properties
Mr Campbell said the critical cruise travel sector enjoyed a “strong season” with 116 ship arrivals by mid-September.
He told MPs: “The team at the BTA projects cruise visitor volumes up to 400,000 passengers contributing $162 million to the economy.”
The minister added: “The growth of our hotel bed count is a pressing need for tourism’s recovery.
“It is a challenging environment. However, there are some promising developments on the hotel front.
“Azura hotel has announced that it will complete its final phase of construction this fall, and that its second property, Nautilus, is progressing well with a sold-out Phase I, and hotel opening slated for 2024.
“The Bermudiana Beach Hotel, a Tapestry Resort by Hilton, is set to add 110 much needed hotel rooms into inventory in 2023.
“Likewise, Rosedon Hotel, which has developed an award-winning sustainable farm-to-table culinary model at the property’s restaurant, will reopen its boutique hotel next year with 12 luxury rooms.
“Cambridge Beaches has invested in renovations to the property and the opening of new food and beverage outlets.
"The Fairmont Southampton deal continues to move towards finalisation with all parties working through final documentation in the knowledge that this redevelopment represents the single most important game changer on so many fronts in tourism.“