Record figures for overnight tourism
We reported on Wednesday night’s newscast that overnight tourist arrivals in Belize were up by an overall nine percent in the first half of the year compared to the same period last year. The initial release indicated that in the months from April to June, there were approximately five thousand seven hundred and ninety-one overnight visitors to the jewel; with May showing a whopping fourteen point six percent increase. But the figures appear to be closer to ten thousand visitors says Laura Esquivel-Frampton, the Acting Director of Tourism. Esquivel-Frampton says that the B.T.B. is ecstatic because overnight tourism, which racks up at the least a thousand U.S. dollars per person, has been improving compared to 2011’s statistics.
Laura Esquivel-Frampton, Acting Director of Tourism
“We’ve had a record breaking month every single month this year except for one month so far and the figures were off by maybe a hundred people to break that record also. So we are happy to announce that from January to June, we’ve had a cumulative nine percent increase in overnight arrivals and every month we see significant growth happening.”
“What are the economical implications of something like this because of course a nine percent increase across the board for the first half of the year is tremendous?”
“It is; it is phenomenal and it goes to show that a lot of hard work has been put in over the last few years; changing up our marketing, getting out there, talking with our wholesalers, our travel agents, working with the ministry and all our legislations and policies that we have to do; and really everybody coming together and working and it shows that Belize can do it; we can with our little marketing dollars get our name out there. Economically, of course, it is fantastic—the more people that come overnight, we know they generate; approximately their spending in Belize is a thousand U.S. dollars per person depending on how long they stay. That includes their accommodations, their meals and your tours. That is significant for our country if you think about it; each of these increases is approximately another thousand U.S. dollars here in Belize.”
Esquivel-Frampton says that the July figures for arrivals at the Philip Goldson International Airport are up seventeen point seven percent in overnight visitors.