Hong Kong Visitor Arrivals in October 2009

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Hong Kong visitor arrivals reached 2,761,945 in October 2009, 9% more than in October 2008. Cumulatively, arrivals for the 10-month period from January to October totalled 23,921,918, with the year-to-date shortfall narrowed to -1.6%.

A substantial growth of 22.8% was recorded for arrivals from Mainland China in October 2009, especially during the extended National Day Golden Week holiday period, causing overall arrivals to increase by 9% year-on-year.

Arrivals from South and Southeast Asia dipped by a moderate 5.8% in October over the same month in 2008, as visitor traffic of Indonesia and Malaysia slowed down after the Eid al-Fitr holidays last month. Arrivals from North Asia and Taiwan were also 21.2% and 11.4% down respectively, as the former was continuously affected by the decrease in outbound travel in South Korea, and the latter by cross-strait direct links.

In the long-haul regions, the mild decrease in arrivals, which averaged - 2.5%, confirmed that the decline in visitor traffic has slowed down. As a matter of fact, the shortfall was a significant improvement over the almost 18% drop in March 2009, when the impact of the economic downturn was deeply felt. Both the Americas, as well as Europe, Africa and the Middle East, registered mild decreases of - 2.2% and 0.2% respectively, while the shortfall of Australia, New Zealand and South Pacific stood at -9.2%.

As for the individual markets, it is worth noting that the emerging markets, namely India (+25.6%), Russia (+29.7%) and the Middle East (+25.1%), all achieved substantial growth in October 2009.

  January October 2009 October 2009
Market Regions 2009 Change vs. 2008 2009 Change vs. 2008
Long-haul markets 3,471,376 -8.4% 452,041 -2.5%
The Americas 1,282,666 -8.8% 161,670 -2.2%
Europe, Africa and the Middle East 1,609,938 -7.6% 217,886 -0.2%
Australia, New Zealand and South Pacific 578,772 -9.4% 72,485 -9.2%
Short-haul markets (excl. Mainland China & Macau) 5,369,368 -11.6% 563,277 -11.7%
North Asia 1,476,731 -20.8% 137,039 -21.2%
South and Southeast Asia 2,233,220 -3.5% 253,464 -5.8%
Taiwan 1,659,417 -12.3% 172,774 -11.4%
Mainland China 14,563,368 +4.9% 1,686,686 +22.8%
Total (includes arrivals from Macau SAR) 23,921,918 -1.6% 2,761,945 +9%

Cumulative Hong Kong Visitor Arrivals for January-October 2009

Cumulatively, arrivals for the 10-month period from January to October 2009 now stand at 1.6% down compared with the same period in 2008, a continued improvement on the - 3.4% decline in June 2009 and - 2.8% in September 2009. While Mainland China came to the fore with cumulative growth of 4.9%, the shortfall in other market regions has further narrowed. All the long-haul regions are now down to single-digit decline. As for the short-haul regions, South and Southeast Asia recorded moderate contraction of - 3.5%. There was, however, a larger gap in North Asia and Taiwan, for reasons mentioned above.

Overall, some 56.4% of all visitors to Hong Kong in October stayed in the city for at least one night, 2.2 percentage points lower than in the same month last year. The remaining 43.6% same-day in-town visitors either returned home or left for another destination on the same day they arrived.

From January to October 2009, more than 13.6 million or 57% 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 10.29 million (43%) were classified as same-day in-town visitors.

Hotel occupancy across all categories of hotels in October 2009 was 84%, just one percentage point lower than in October 2008. The geographic locations with the highest occupancy were Yau Ma Tei and Mong Kok, where hotels recorded an average occupancy rate of 91%. The average achieved hotel room rate across all hotel categories was HK$1,144, 20.0% lower than in October 2008.

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

See recent travel news from: Travel News Asia, Hong Kong, Hong Kong Visitor Arrivals, October 2009

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