Long-stay arrivals down

Long-stay arrivals for the month of November showed a decline of 1,000 visitors or a decrease of 2.5 per cent when compared to the same period for 2012.

This added to the overall decline in long-stay visitor arrivals for the January to November period.

Cumulatively there was a decline of 5.8 per cent or a decrease of 27,778 visitors when compared to the previous year. When compared with 2011, it represented a decline of almost 60,000 visitors for the period under review.

According to Sue Springer, executive director of the Barbados Hotel & Tourism Association (BHTA), the decline was being “manifested in the tax collections of Government, a drop in our Tourism Fund revenues and a decline in employment”.

Looking back at the year that was Springer told Barbados TODAY: “2013 was a challenging year in many ways, a year marked by both man-made and terrible natural disasters, a year that saw many changes within the global tourism arena and a year that forcibly highlighted to us that the need for strong leadership and implementation of policies is imperative for the survival of our industry and by extension Barbados”.

Despite a drop in long-stay visitor arrivals cruise ship arrivals for the January to August period last year showed an increase of 36,463 passengers or just about 10.6 per cent when compared to same period for 2012. The Barbados Port Authority projected an increase in cruise calls and passenger arrivals from 6.5 per cent
or 616,317 passenger arrivals in 2012 to 656,083 in 2013, with a further growth of 5 per cent to total 688,152 passengers based on current bookings for 2014.

The increase in cruise ship calls was also projected to move from a total of 356 in 2012, to a 4.5 per cent increase or 372 in 2013, and to 395 in 2014, a further increase of 6.2 per cent.

“A number of European operators have made inaugural calls during this 2013/14 season including MSC’s Musica and NCL’s Breakaway. A number of ships will return in 2014 after a break [inlcuding] the Jewel of the Seas, the Royal Princess and the Costa Mediterranea,” said Springer.

5 Responses to Long-stay arrivals down

  1. Glenda Martin
    Glenda Martin January 4, 2014 at 6:36 pm

    My guess is a lot of older people have either passed on or just can’t travel especially with the cost of insurance. Another issue is Barbados is rarely promoted in Ontario and most people have this thought that Barbados is very expensive. Plus Air Canada flights are totally ridiculous this year.

  2. Sharmian Niel
    Sharmian Niel January 4, 2014 at 8:00 pm

    Barbados is changing…….for the worse, but there are more excuses about why people are not coming to live/to stay long term/to holiday than I’ve had hot dinners. Yes there are economic issues in other countries but the island is not what it was, with crappy hotels and rude staff in shops contributing to the perception that the island is becoming less of a paradise than other islands.

  3. Robert Holloway
    Robert Holloway January 5, 2014 at 12:43 am

    plan to be there in the fall for about six weeks but airfare out of Pacific Coast is not cheap and Air Canada flight awards is like a lotto. We buy local as much as possible.

  4. Sharon Woolley
    Sharon Woolley January 5, 2014 at 5:36 am

    Nothing will change regards tourism until you get a BTA who live in 2014 and not 1970, crime has to be lowered, tourists of all ages see what is going on via the internet, service has to be bettered in shops, restaurants and hotels. The current BTA fail to get to grips with the recession that has hit for the last few years in Europe and worldwide come to that ! why should a couple pay out for 2 weeks in Barbados when they could have 5 weeks in Europe for the same price ? when the BTA either get their heads out of their backsides and appreciate what is happening to the rest of the world, or better still this outdated bunch are replaced tourism will continue to fall.

  5. Adrian Loveridge January 6, 2014 at 6:35 am

    Its actually the 20th consecutive month of long stay visitor decline. Unprecedented in my 25 years actively involved in tourism on Barbados. We enter yet another year without a national marketing plan, a re-structured BTA, tourism master plan and not a single one of the tourism ten point plan having been successfully implemented. It is the price we are all paying for not putting the right peope in place, but according to the MOT ‘If we had to be perfectly honest, St. Lucia is at least 30 years behind Barbados in terms of of tourism… thats the reality’.
    While we are guided by polcymakers completely out of touch with ‘reality’ what can we expect?


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