Saint Lucia draws more visitors, Canadians up 10%
Ruins in Fort Rodney on Pigeon Island, Saint Lucia.

Saint Lucia draws more visitors, Canadians up 10%

CASTRIES — Saint Lucia is joining the rest of the Caribbean in celebrating major increases in visitor arrivals in 2015.

The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) announced that visitor arrivals to the region were up 6% at the end of the first quarter, while Saint Lucia alone recorded a 6.4% growth over the same period last year.

This growth has continued past the first quarter for Saint Lucia however, with a 1.4% and 7.2% increase recorded in April and May respectively. At the end of the first five months of the year, total stay-over arrivals to the island was 159,077; up 5.5% from the same period in 2014.

Furthermore, the figures recorded in the first four consecutive months, were the highest figures for these months ever recorded in the island’s history. The 29,658 arrivals recorded in May this year, was however the highest figure for that month in the last five years.

The North American market has been extremely buoyant this year, with Canada recording a 10% increase in arrivals year-to-date (YTD) and the U.S. 9%, stemming largely from the increase in airlift and strategic marketing approach within the respective markets.

The greatest percentage increase however, was noted from the Caribbean, which stood at 22,142 arrivals at the end of May – a 21% increase from the same period last year. Improvement in the data collection method, particularly in capturing arrivals from Martinique by boat, has been attributed to this increase.

In other performance areas, cruise tourism is also on the rise, with a 9% increase in arrivals being recorded between January and April, following a 4% increase in cruise calls. In yachting, a 1.5% decrease in arrivals was noted, despite there being a 14% decrease in calls.

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