Hong Kong Visitor Arrivals for November 2005

Travel News Asia 30 December 2005

Visitor numbers to Hong Kong numbered 2,061,493 in November 2005, a 5.6% year-on-year increase over 2004. Cumulative arrivals for the first 11 months of 2005 ended the month at 21,160,479, 7.3% more than in the previous year.

Long-haul markets led the arrivals growth, with Europe, Africa and the Middle East rising by 20.3% (163,392), followed by Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific 14.8% (50,746) and the Americas 10.9% (151,685), while double-digit growth was also seen from South and Southeast Asia 10.5% (249,004). More modest growth was seen from other regions, with Mainland China increasing by 2.8% (1,070,488), North Asia by 1.8% (168,164), and Taiwan showing a slight rise of 0.6% (166,635).

Individual long-haul markets registering double-digit growth were Germany (14.6%), Australia (14.3%), France (12.1%), and Canada (10.8%), while the best-performing short-haul markets were the Philippines (18.3%) and Singapore (14.7%). 

While our long-haul regions continue to show the strongest growth, we also saw encouraging performances from such key short-haul markets as the Philippines and Singapore, which we expect will be sustained to the end of the year, said Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB) Executive Director Clara Chong. Our increased activities in secondary and emerging markets are also reflected in continued strong arrivals growth from countries such as South Africa, Israel and the Netherlands, which have all shown healthy double-digit increases since the beginning of the year.

Although the overall outlook for global and regional tourism remains largely positive, we do envisage some short-term impact on December arrivals from the World Trade Organizations Hong Kong Ministerial Conference [WTO HKMC]. Were also continuing to closely track the possible effects on arrivals of factors such as avian flu and the rising cost of aviation fuel. In spite of these factors, were nonetheless confident of reaching our targeted 23 million by the end of the year, Ms Chong added.

During December, the HKTB has being heavily promoting its 2005 Hong Kong WinterFest Mega Event, to encourage travel to the city both before and after the WTO HKMC. The event will also usher in the full launch of the HKTBs 2006 Discover Hong Kong Year integrated global campaign, which is aimed at further boosting next years tourism arrivals and spending in Hong Kong.

Statistics by Markets

Mainland China provided 1,070,488 arrivals in November, 2.8% more than in the same month in 2004. This raised the cumulative total for January to November 2005 to 11,362,954, a year-on-year increase of 2.4%. Individual Visit Scheme (IVS) arrivals in November numbered 444,380, 41.5% of all Mainland visitors and 17.8% more than in the same month in 2004. The cumulative IVS total for January-November now stands at more than 5.01 million, 44.1% of all arrivals from the Mainland and a 32.7% rise over 2004. 

November arrivals from Taiwan grew by 0.6% to 166,635, taking the cumulative total for first 11 months of this year to 1,949,554 (+3.1%).

South and Southeast Asian arrivals increased by 10.5% to 249,004, raising the total number of visitors from the region between January and November to 2,129,182, 16.4% more than for the same period in 2004. The greatest volume among individual markets was provided by Singapore (59,952, +14.7%), followed by Malaysia (48,754, +6.1%), Indonesia (48,022, +6.2%) and the Philippines (35,064, +18.3%). 

November arrivals from North Asia reached 168,164 (+1.8%), taking the cumulative 11-month total for the region to 1,678,558, 12.6% more than in the same period in 2004. Arrivals from Japan increased by 5.2% (115,049), while those from South Korea declined by 4.8% (53,115), which may reflect a wait-and-see attitude among Korean travellers in the weeks prior to the WTO HKMC.

All key long-haul regions grew in November, led by the 20.3% (163,392) increase from Europe, Africa and The Middle East. Arrivals from Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific grew by 14.8% to 50,746 and from the Americas by 10.9% to 151,685. Cumulative January-November arrivals from each market increased by 25.1% (1,590,765), 29.9% (561,726) and 12.3% (1,436,170) respectively.

Same-Day In-Town Visitors

Some 63.9% of all visitors to Hong Kong in November stayed in the city for at least one night, compared with 62.8% in the same month last year. Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific had the highest percentage of overnight arrivals, at 78.9%.

Between January and November 2005, 63.1% of all visitors stayed for one night or more, half a percentage point higher than in the first 11 months of 2004.

Hotel Occupancy

Hotel occupancy across all categories of hotels and tourist guest houses in November was 95%, a one percentage-point fall compared with the 2004 figure. This partially reflects the 5.6% increase in Hong Kongs room supply during the past 12 months.

Visitors most favoured geographic locations in November were Yau Ma Tei / Mong Kok, where hotels recorded an occupancy rate of 98%.

The average achieved hotel room rate across all hotel categories and districts was HK$847, 11% higher than in November 2004.

The average hotel occupancy for January-November 2005 is 85%, two percentage points lower than in 2004. The average achieved hotel room rate is HK$765, 13.8% higher than in the first 11 months of 2004.

See also: Hong Kong Visitor Arrivals for October 2005

See other recent news regarding: HKTB, Visitor Arrivals, Hong Kong

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