The Cayman Islands ends year with record-breaking arrivals
Consistency in delivering excellence and a commitment to providing Cayman-kind experiences has once again earned the Cayman Islands a record-breaking year of visitation. In what was notably the best year in more than a decade, the country welcomed more than 380,000 stay-over guests by the end of 2014, according to visitor-arrival statistics released by the Department of Tourism.
The data shows that 382,816 total visitor air arrivals were recorded, representing a 10.84 per cent increase over the 2013 performance and is the best stay-over visitor arrival figure the Cayman Islands has recorded in more than 14 years. Notably the month of December showed the best visitor-arrival figures for any December since the year 2000 with 40,568 stay-over visitors accounting for a year-over-year increase of 3.58 per cent. This included an increase in cruise arrivals for the year which totalled 1,609,555 passengers, a year-over-year increase of 16.98 per cent. This cruise-arrival figure marks the best year since 2007.
"It has been a wonderful experience throughout 2014 to witness the success of tourism businesses continuing to climb throughout the year. Hotels recorded exceptional occupancy, taxi drivers were consistently busy, and we have seen growth throughout the sector," shared deputy premier and minister for tourism, Moses Kirkconnell.
Commitment to partnerships
"We know that this success comes from our continued commitment to partnerships with private-sector entities, the diligent work of this government, the Department of Tourism and the unique approaches implemented throughout the year to an integrated strategic plan." This plan included Department of Tourism in-market activations in key cities such as New York City, London and Toronto.
"It was another successful year of promoting the Cayman Islands to a global audience," commented Rosa Harris, director of the Department of Tourism.
"One fun initiative over the summer was taking Stingray City to the streets of London using a 3D chalk art simulation. We received such positive reactions from people who stopped by to 'kiss a ray' and learn about the destination in an unexpected way. We look forward to more creative initiatives in 2015 and further raising the awareness of the Cayman Islands as a leading destination in the Caribbean for discerning travellers."
The Cayman Islands ranks in the top five of Caribbean destinations visited by cruise passengers. "The planned improvements for the cruise port and George Town should increase visitation to allow us to easily move into the number two spot on that list in a very short time," said councillor in the Ministry of Tourism, Joseph Hew. "The continued increase in visitor numbers is confirmation that our beautiful scenery, amazing activities and friendly people continue to draw visitors from far and wide."