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Hong Kong Visitor Arrivals in November 2009

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Visitor arrivals to Hong Kong reached 2,606,085 in November 2009, 7.6% more than in November 2008. Due to the positive November result, the cumulative visitor arrivals shortfall from January to November has been further narrowed to -0.7% from -1.6% in October 2009.

November 2009 - Hong Kong Visitor Arrivals

Following its strong performance in October, Mainland China continued to lead the way as the top performing market region in November, with arrivals increased by 13.3% year-on-year. As well as reflecting consumers desire for travel, the growth was also contributed by the increased consumption visits by permanent residents in Shenzhen, who have been able to apply for multiple entry endorsement under the Individual Visit Scheme since April 2009.

Also registering positive growth was South and Southeast Asia (5.2%). As consumers sentiments gradually improved, arrivals from a number of markets in the region, including Indonesia (+26.9%), Thailand (+11.9%) and the Philippines (+3.6%), picked up in November, with winter being one of the favourite travel periods among visitors in the region. Another market with remarkable growth was India (+28.5%), which enjoyed increased flight capacity since September 2009.

As for North Asia and Taiwan, although arrivals remained in the negative zone, the former owing to the decreased outbound travel from South Korea and the latter to the cross-strait direct links, their shortfall has been narrowed to -8.3% and -5.1% respectively, indicating that the decline has slowed down.

In the long-haul regions, positive gain was recorded across all regions, as compared with the relatively lower arrival base in November 2008, when the global financial crisis caused severe deficit in arrivals from these regions.

Among the individual markets, there were especially encouraging performance from the emerging markets. On top of India, as mentioned above, both Russia (+37.8%) and the Middle East (+42.4%) showed robust growth in November 2009.

Cumulative Hong Kong Visitor Arrivals for January-November 2009

Cumulatively, arrivals for the 11-month period from January to November 2009 stand at 0.7% down compared with the same period in 2008, a continued improvement on the -2.8% in September 2009 and -1.6% in October 2009.

Mainland China outperformed other market regions with growth of 5.7%, and was the only region showing positive growth. Nevertheless, the cumulative decreases in other market regions were significantly less marked than in the earlier part of this year. For example, arrivals from South and Southeast Asia were only 2.6% behind, as compared with 7.0% down back in July 2009. All the long-haul regions were also down to single-digit decline. There was, however, a larger gap in North Asia and Taiwan, for reasons mentioned above.

Overall, some 58.1% of all visitors to Hong Kong in November stayed in the city for at least one night, 0.9 percentage point lower than in the same month last year. The remaining 41.9% same-day in-town visitors either returned home or left for another destination on the same day they arrived.

From January to November 2009, more than 15.15 million or 57.1% of total arrivals stayed in the city for at least one night, compared with 58.5% during the same period last year. The decline of overnight arrivals was mainly due to the drop in business travel as a result of the economic downturn. The remaining 11.38 million (42.9%) were classified as same-day in-town visitors.

Hotel occupancy across all categories of hotels in November 2009 was 89%, one percentage point higher than in November 2008. The geographic locations with the highest occupancy were Yau Ma Tei and Mong Kok, where hotels recorded an average occupancy rate of 94%. The average achieved hotel room rate across all hotel categories was HK$1,069, 13% lower than in November 2008.

See also: Hong Kong Visitor Arrivals in 2008 and October 2008, and October 2009.

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