SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) – The St. Maarten Tourism Bureau (STB) said on Sunday that for the summer months of June, July and August 2021, the destination received in total 80,006 visitor arrivals.
72% of arrivals during the summer months originated from the US, 13% from France, 13% from the rest of Europe, 1% from the Caribbean, and 2% from other regions such as South America, Canada, and Asia.
For the summer months, the month of June, the destination received 25,443 arrivals. The destination reached a peak in July with 30,661 arrivals. Compared to July 2019 (pre COVID-19), this was a 2% increase in overall arrivals. August saw a bit of a decrease with 23,902 arrivals.
Looking at arrival’s performance by market, the United States market continues to lead the recovery, even in the month of August when overall arrival performance dipped.
The United States arrivals continue to grow compared to the respective months in 2019 showcasing an even stronger performance in 2021 compared to that of 2019.
On the other side, Canadian and South American arrivals lag way behind, carrying the performance of overall August arrivals down.
The STB has executed an aggressive marketing and public relations campaign in the U.S. market to capture the interests of travelers, and the aforementioned has increased consumer awareness and bookings are trending upwards as well as airline load factors.
The national tourism economy stimulus was kicked off with various consumer and trade initiatives. One being the SXM Villa Vibes campaign highlighting the villa product on the island.
The campaign which has not only been pushed via social media, but press channels, was picked up by Boston Globe, Seattle PI, Luxury travel, and other major publications resulting in a reach in the millions.
Sint Maarten’s Travel Agent Months targeting travel agents in the North American market has also kicked off, during which on island partners offer discounts to agents encouraging travel agents to experience the destination for themselves and to continue pushing Sint Maarten as the destination to visit to their clients.
“We have big expectations for arrival performance for the upcoming season based on the current performance of the US market and with our third highest source market, Canada, returning this winter season with flights from Toronto and Montreal,” says Market Researcher, Sabrina Carty.
Director of STB May-Ling Chun said: “It is about creating those moments for the consumers that fulfill their desire to travel to Sint Maarten because we just captured the perfect answer to their needs at that given time when they open up that social media page or read an article of a blogger that we host, or an article that was pitched to the various reading channels.”