In 2023, hotel occupancy in the Bahamas has surpassed 2019 levels, with average daily room rates and room revenue significantly ahead of that year, according to the country’s Ministry of Tourism, Investments and Aviation (BMOTIA).
In the first three quarters of 2023, the Bahamas welcomed more than 7.2m visitors. This equals in nine months the total number of arrivals for all of 2019, putting the country on target to welcome more than 8m visitors in 2023.
Cruise arrivals from the beginning of the year through to September are up 61% over the corresponding period in 2022, and 45% ahead of 2019. Foreign air arrivals, which include stopovers and day visitors, are reportedly up 21% over the same period in 2022 and stopover visitors through to September are just shy of the total number of stopover visitors for the same period of 2019.
Minister of Tourism, Investments and Aviation and Deputy Prime Minister the Hon I Chester Cooper hailed the results as a confluence of strategic planning and hotel and cruise operators’ continued confidence in the strength of the destination.
In terms of hotels, Cooper stated: “We see that room rates are nearly 60% higher than they were in 2019, yet occupancy rates are higher and [the number of] room nights sold continues to increase. This not only translates to higher revenue for all tourism stakeholders, but also speaks to the extraordinary demand that exists for our product.
“We are seeing a healthy hold in repeat visitors from our main source markets, while witnessing major increases in new arrivals who are spreading the message about the Bahamas. We must be incredibly intentional about tourism.”
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GlobalData’s travel and tourism analysis finds that the Bahamas’ top five source markets are the US, Canada, the UK, France and Italy.
BMOTIA recently hosted guests throughout California to re-engage tourism partners and boost visitor arrivals to the Bahamas from the state.