Tourism activity up 8% in January; down 2.1% in 2017
The Central Bank of the Bahamas (CBOB) reported that tourism activity expanded during the first month of 2018, following a 2.1 percent decline in 2017.
According to the CBOB Monthly Economic and Financial Developments (MEFD) report, data from the Nassau Airport Development Company (NAD) showed passenger traffic increased by eight percent in January, in comparison to a 0.1 percent increase in the same period last year.
“The non-U.S. international component rose by 11.8 percent, a turnaround from a 6.0 percent reduction in the previous period, while U.S. departures firmed by 7.2 percent, outpacing the year earlier 1.5 percent uptick,” the MEFD report states.
Data in the MEFD from the Ministry of Tourism showed that 2017 numbers took a hit due to a reduction in room capacity on Grand Bahama, “the country’s second largest market”.
“A breakdown by market showed that visitors to Grand Bahama decreased by 26.6 percent, following a 13.2 percent falloff in the previous year, as the declines in air and sea arrivals were extended to 43.8 percent and 23.5 percent, from 21.3 percent and 11.6 percent, respectively,” the report notes.
According to the MEFD, in 2017, total visitor arrivals to The Bahamas fell by 2.1 percent. They fell by 2.5 percent in the prior year.
“By port of entry, both sea and air arrivals decreased by 1.5 percent and 4.0 percent, respectively, compared to gains of 3.2 percent and 0.1 percent in 2016,” the MEFD report points out.
It also states that visitors to the capital “slowed significantly” to 1.2 percent, from 9.8 percent in the prior year, given that the country’s airlift in 2017 declined by 3.6 percent, versus a 0.8 expansion in 2016.
“Similarly, gains in sea arrivals narrowed to 3.2 percent from 13.7 percent a year earlier,” according to the MEFD.
“In a slight offset, visitors to the Family Islands firmed by 2.6 percent, vis-à-vis a 2.0 percent falloff in the prior period, as the growth in the air segment quickened to 14.3 percent from 11.8 percent, while the main sea component expanded by 0.8 percent, a reversal from a 3.9 percent contraction in the prior period.”