The South Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO) has published its Quarterly Review of Tourist Arrivals to the Pacific Island Countries (PICs) for the first quarter of 2018.
“International visitor arrivals to the Asia and the Pacific region registered a strong growth of 8.2%, up from 7.3% in the December quarter. The global tourist arrivals also recorded 6.9% growth in the first quarter of 2018, outstripping the 4.9% gain in the December quarter of 2017” said SPTO Chief Executive Officer, Christopher Cocker.
The positive result reflected a continuation of the solid trend witnessed in 2017 triggered by strong confidence in global tourism.
Tourist arrivals to the Pacific ACP and SPTO member countries reached a provisional 464,593 in the March quarter 1 of 2018.
This outperformed the March quarter of 2017 by 6.2%, but weakened against the December quarter 2017 by 16.5%.
“The positive performance against the March quarter of 2017 was boosted by rising arrivals in majority of the destinations including Tuvalu, Solomon Islands, Palau, Vanuatu, Fiji, French Polynesia and Samoa” said Cocker.
In Quarter 1, 2018, Fiji continues to lead the top 10 destination shares with 36.7% followed by French Polynesia at 9.7%, Palau 7.3%, PNG 7.2%, Samoa 6.8%, Cook Islands 6.5%, Timor Leste 6.0%, New Caledonia 5.9% and Vanuatu with 5.1%. The remaining 8.7% was shared among all the other destinations in the region.
“Numbers are what continue to drive our industry and it’s vital that we’re not only monitoring but analyzing our statistics in particular arrivals and yield from the source markets as well as the destinations to help our stakeholders, governments and member countries undertake proper planning and sustainable development of tourism,” said Cocker.
Arrivals from the PICs major source markets recorded a 6.1% increase against the March quarter 1 of 2017 but fell by 16.6% over the December quarter 4.
The year-on-year quarter growth was attributed to increase in arrivals from majority of the source markets with double-digit increase from New Zealand by 12.8%, USA 10.1%, and Europe 10.7%.
On market shares, the top leading markets include Australia at 26.7%, New Zealand 16%, USA 11.2%, Europe and Other Asia with 9.2% each and China at 8.6%.
The publication is compiled by SPTO’s Research & Statistics Division and is also distributed to SPTO’s member countries through Board Members, National Statistics Offices, National Tourism Offices, Reserve/Central Banks, Private Sector Members and Other stakeholders.