The year 2013 started out on an all-time high for Belize’s tourism industry, having documented record numbers for the first quarter. The trends in the first quarter of 2013 tourist arrivals are indicative of 2012’s patterns, in which substantial numbers were recorded per month. In fact, the last time there was a decrease in any month for tourist arrivals was October 2011- making it nineteen consecutive months of increases in overnight tourist arrivals to Belize.
There was a record high in arrivals by air in January, February and March of 2013, showing a 7.58%, 6.0% and 10.1% increases respectively, compared to 2012. This year’s month of March recorded 28,623 tourist arrivals, which is over 5,200 more than last year’s March total of 25,982. This is the first time in history that arrivals by air exceeded the 28,000 visitor mark for any month. In summary, airport tourist arrivals showed 8.1% growth in this year’s first quarter, in comparison to last year’s.
For overnight tourist arrivals, the months of January, February and March recorded increases of 17.2%, 11.6% and 11% respectively. For the first time ever, overnight visitors exceeded 35,000 visitors in March 2013. The previous all-time high was 32,240 visitors in March of the previous year. Overall, the overnight tourist arrivals stats indicate that there was a 13% growth over 2012’s first quarter.
Despite dismal cruise arrivals last year, 2013’s first quarter showed notable increases. There was a 19.4% increase in arrivals in January, and an 11.4% increase in arrivals in February, compared to last year’s stats. In addition, March saw a modest increase of 1.4% over the previous year, all of which resulted in a total of 10.9% increase in cruise arrivals in the first three months of this year.
For more information, please contact the Belize Tourism Board at 227-2420.