Macau welcomed a total of 32.6 million visitors in 2017, a 5.4% increase on the previous year. Revealing the city’s full year tourism figures at its annual press conference on Wednesday, the Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO) announced increases across the board with mainland China visitation up 5.3% to 29.4 million and international visitor arrivals growing by 6.2% to more than 3.1 million.
Not surprisingly, mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan stood as Macau’s top three visitor source markets with 41% of mainland visitors coming from Guangdong Province. Over 10 million mainland visitors arrived under the Individual Visit Scheme, which constituted 47.8% of mainland visitor arrivals.
Among international markets, Korea ranked first with over 870,000 visitors, a 32% increase on 2016 levels, while Japanese visitor arrivals climbed by 9.4%. Visitation from the Philippines and Indonesia grew by 7% and 8% respectively.
Perhaps the most positive news for Macau’s tourism industry was a significant increase in those visitors staying in Macau overnight, exceeding the number of same-day visitors and breaking the city’s all-time record for both quantity and proportion.
The total number of overnight-stay visitors rose by 9.9% to more than 17.2 million, accounting for 52.9% of total visitor arrivals. The average length of stay stood at 2.1 days for overnight-stay visitors and 1.2 days for all visitors.
The number of overnight guests at hotel establishments increased by more than 8% to over 13 million last year with the average occupancy rate of hotel establishments in Macau in 2017 exceeding 88% – an increase of more than 5% year-on-year increase of more than 5 percentage points.
“Despite uncertain factors looming behind the global political situation and the devastation brought by Hato – the strongest typhoon in recorded history – to Macau, the local tourism industry saw fair performance overall last year, bolstered by the steady economic recovery and united efforts of different sectors in the tourism industry,” the MGTO said.
“The preliminary data reveals that different tourism figures registered year-on-year growth last year, including total and international visitor arrivals, the sum of visitors from the Greater China region as well as that of overnight-stay visitors.”