Tourism figures spark optimism
Senator Michael Fahy has hailed a 90 per cent rise in visitors to the island last November compared to the same month the previous year.
Stephen Todd, the president of the Bermuda Hotel Association, echoed the tourism minister’s sentiments, saying the association was “very encouraged by the latest figures”.
Last November saw nearly a 52 per cent increase in vacation and leisure visitors flying into the island as well as greater cruise ship activity
In a statement released this afternoon Mr Fahy said he anticipated the full year figures for 2016 will show it was as one of the brightest tourism years in nearly a decade.
“I expect to see positive growth in regular visitor count from which Bermuda can rebuild a strong tourism base over the calendar year,” he added.
“The Bermuda Tourism Authority figures for November show a huge rise in vacation air arrivals, a 31 per cent surge in hotel occupancy and a 35 per cent surge in revenue-per-available-room.
“There is no doubt we are growing our tourism business in what was previously regarded as the slow season from November to March. This should generate jobs and other economic opportunity across the island.
“There is no doubt that the dedicated Bermudians at the BTA under Bill Hanbury have done a sterling job in re-inventing Bermuda tourism.”
Air seat capacity in November was increased by nearly 12 per cent on the previous year, while total air visitors for the 11 months to November rose by close to 11 per cent. Vacation air arrivals are now performing at their best level since 2007, according to Government.
Mr Todd added: “Bermuda Hotel Association members are very encouraged by the latest tourism figures which reflect positive results in both hotel occupancy and revenue-per-available-room during what has traditionally been viewed as the shoulder season.
“The BHA views these results as a clear indication that the marketing strategy of the Bermuda Tourism Authority in promoting Bermuda as a year-round destination is resonating well with both business and leisure travellers.
“As an association we look forward to continued positive trends in our industry. We stand ready to support these positive initiatives which are key to our future success.”