Overview of Anguilla’s 2004 Tourism Season


Anguilla’s tourism sector continues to show signs of strengthening as data on visitor arrivals for the 2004 showed an increase of 11 percent over last 2003. Total visitor arrivals were 120,788 in 2004 compared to 109,282 in 2003.


Tourists (Stay over)

Tourists were the main source of increase for visitor arrivals in 2004.  During the 1st quarter of the year this type of visitor performed considerably well.  Arrivals totaled 15,989 compared to 13,449 in 2003 resulting in a 19% increase.  The first quarter’s performance was drawing off a very encouraging 4th quarter 2003 when arrivals were up 16%.  The month of February had the highest percentage increase in tourist arrivals of 24% from last year.  January and March also showed increases of 14% and 19% respectively.

The 15,989 tourists that visited during this period were the highest total in arrivals to Anguilla since 1999, when 16,395 tourists visited which indicates that the it takes quite some time for the industry to recover from natural disasters (Hurricane Lenny 1999 and from some economic shocks that affect the world (September 11)).  March 2004 recorded the highest number in arrivals of 5,846.  This was also the largest influx of persons to the island in one month since 1999.


T
he route that tourists take to come to Anguilla is changing. They are increasingly coming by sea to Anguilla. The airport is usually the main port of entry for tourists and   49.3 % or 7,986 of overall tourist arrivals entered through this port for this first quarter 2004, a 3% decline from the same period last year.  Blowing Point port received 42.3% of overall tourist arrivals, up 30% from the first quarter 2003.  6,765 persons entered Anguilla through this port.  Sandy Ground was the port of entry for 1,328 persons for this period.

21% of tourists visiting Anguilla during January to March stayed for a period of 1-3 days.  39% stayed for just under a week and 40% stayed for a week or more.  The average length of stay was 7.7 days compared to 9.4 days in 2003.

Tourists from Germany increased 34.0% for this period, followed by tourists from Italy by 29%.  Other countries experiencing increases were the U.S.A., Canada and the United Kingdom by 18%, 14.3% and 15.6% respectively.  Arrivals from the Caribbean were down 38% for the quarter compared to last year.

During the second quarter, this sector of visitor arrivals, which make up a larger contribution to the economy, performed considerably well relative to the same period last year.   Over the second quarter tourist arrivals increased 25% compared to an increase of 19% during the first quarter. The month of May saw the largest percentage increase in arrivals of 31 percent from May last year.  This was in fact the highest recorded total for the month of May in the last decade.  5,130 tourists visited during the month.  April and June both recorded increases of 25 percent and 19 percent respectively.  15,156 tourists visited during the second quarter this year compared to 12,075 tourists for the same period in 2003, representing a 25 percent increase in tourist arrivals over the period.

Tourist arrivals through the port of Blowing Point for this period were 6,652, up 42.5 percent from the same period in 2003.  Arrivals through the airport also rose slightly by six percentage points over the second quarter of 2003. 

73 percent of tourists during this period stayed for approximately 4-15 days while just under a quarter of those visiting the island stayed for 1 – 3 days and 4 percent stayed for 16 or more days.   On average for this quarter the length of stay was 6.9 days compared to 8.3 days during the second quarter of 2003.

467 persons visited Anguilla from Germany during this period compared to 122 for the second quarter of 2003.  This market  performed well for the first half of 2004.  Arrivals from Germany accounted for 3 percent of the market share.  Arrivals from the Caribbean also increased for this period by 47 percent.  During April the Moonsplash Annual Music Festival was held as well as the various Easter festivities (which included this year Anguilla hosting the Regional Inland Revenue Sports Clubs Games) which brought a large number of persons from throughout the region to the island.  The U.S.A, which is the main tourist market for arrivals to Anguilla, represented 67% of the market share.  There was an increase of 23.7percent in tourist arrivals from this country.  Other countries from where increases occurred were Other European Countries (including Switzerland and Austria), Italy and the United Kingdom with 40.7 percent, 5.5 percent and 0.4 percent respectively.

During the 3rd quarter, this type of visitor again performed reasonably well relative to the same period last year increasing by 16 percent. The months of September and July saw the largest percentage increases in arrivals of 22 and 21 percent respectively from last year.  July 2004 recorded the largest monthly total in tourist arrivals to the island over the last decade.  5,485 tourists visited during this month representing an increase of 21 percent over July last year. 
10,909 tourists visited during the 3rd quarter this year compared to 9,365 tourists for the same period in 2003.

Arrivals through the port of Blowing Point were 5,186, up 42 percent from the same period last year.  With the partial closure of the WallBlake airport during September to the larger passenger aircraft, arrivals through this port fell by 6 percent from the 3rd quarter of 2003.

64 percent of tourists during this period stayed for approximately 4-15 days while just under a quarter of those visiting the island stayed for 1 – 3 days and 10.4 percent stayed for 16 or more days.   On average for this quarter the length of stay was 7.7 days compared to 8.7 days during the second quarter of 2003.

All the markets except the Caribbean showed increases for this quarter over last year’s 3rd quarter.  Although Canadian arrivals were up by 41.6 percent over last year, this country accounted for only2.2 percent of the market.  Arrivals from Germany grew by 31 percent annually. 


5,917 persons visited Anguilla from the U.S.A. during this period, up 24 percent from the 4,769 that visited during the same period in 2003. This country is the island’s main tourist market and it accounted for half of the tourist arrivals during this period.

Arrivals, from Other European countries, (including Switzerland and Austria), Italy and the U.K, increased by 31.4, 22 and 19 percent respectively, over the corresponding period last year.

Arrivals from the Caribbean fell slightly by just under one percent from last year

The 4th quarter, arrivals in this type of visitor, was under par relative to the first three quarters.  During this quarter tourist arrivals declined 1 percent from the same period in 2003.  The month of October had the largest decline of 13 percent followed by November with 3 percent over the corresponding periods of 2003.  December recorded a 14 percent increase in tourist arrivals and it was the largest monthly total in tourist arrivals to the island over the last decade.  6,049 tourists visited during this month representing an increase of 14 percent over December last year.    11,953 tourists visited during the 4th quarter this year compared to 12,026 tourists, for the same period in 2003.

Arrivals through the port of Blowing Point were 9,855, up 83 percent from the same period last year.  With the partial closure of the Wallblake airport for most of the fourth quarter to the larger passenger aircraft, arrivals through this port fell by 77 percent from the 4th quarter of 2003.
72 percent of tourists during this period stayed for approximately 4-15 days while 16 percent of those visiting the island stayed for 1 – 3 days and 11 percent stayed for 16 or more days.   On average for this quarter the length of stay was 8.7 days compared to 8.2 days during the fourth quarter of 2003.

All the markets except the Caribbean, Italy, Germany and Other European markets showed increases for this quarter over last year’s 4th quarter.  Arrivals from the Canadian market were up 40 percent over last year and arrivals from the U.S.A. grew by 3 percent. 


Excursionists (Day-Trippers)

Excursionists to Anguilla for the first quarter of 2004 were 11% higher than the same period in 2003.  All three months (January – March) registered increases of 15%, 10% and 9% respectively.

As is expected, Blowing Point had the largest number in arrivals for this type of visitor.  Most excursionists are persons staying in St. Martin and who take the ferry over to Anguilla and make a day of it, enjoying the sights and beaches. 13,800 persons or 74% of excursionists passed through this port.  24% entered through Sandy Ground and 1.5% of overall excursionists entered via the airport.

The U.S.A. was the country from where most excursionists originated, but other Europe (which includes Switzerland and Austria) recorded the largest increase in excursionist arrivals of 82.3% for this period compared to 2003.  Arrivals from the U.K., Italy, Germany and Canada were up 21%, 18.2% and 9.5% respectively over 2003.

Day-tripper numbers declined during this quarter by 2 percent after an 11% increase during the first quarter.   The month of May recorded the largest decline of 31 percent.  Arrivals in June also declined by 3 percent.  April was the only month within this quarter to show an increase of 27percent over the corresponding period in 2003. 

The main source of the decline during the second quarter in excursionists was those who enter through Sandy Ground. The provisional figures indicate that 1,709 persons entered through Sandy Ground during the second quarter of 2004 compared to 3,690 in 2003.  This point of immigration includes not only day-trippers visiting Sandy Ground but also those who visit Shoal and Crocus Bays and the outlying islands.  In contrast excursionist arrivals through Blowing Point for this period were 13,163, a 14.6 percent rise over 2003.

Countries from where increases in arrivals occurred were Germany by 39.3 percent, Other European countries (including Switzerland and Austria) by 16.2 percent and the Caribbean by 5.8%. Arrivals from the United States of America, the United Kingdom and Italy declined by 11.2 percent, 17.3 percent and 20.2 percent respectively.

Day-tripper numbers declined during this quarter slightly by 0.1 percent.   The month of July recorded the largest decline of 12 percent.  August and September within this quarter showed increases of 4 and 19 percent over the corresponding period in 2003. 

The main source of the decline during the 3rd quarter in excursionists was those who entered through Sandy Ground. The figures indicate that 1,815 persons entered through Sandy Ground during this period compared to 3,455 in 2003.  This point of immigration includes not only day-trippers visiting Sandy Ground but also those who visit Shoal and Crocus Bays and the out-lying islands.  In contrast excursionist arrivals through Blowing Point for this period were 15,040, an 11.6 percent rise over 2003.

Countries from where increases in arrivals occurred were the Caribbean by 14.5 percent, Other European Countries by 5.6 percent and Canada by 2.2 percent.  Arrivals from the U.S.A. U.K., Italy and Germany experienced declines of 14.3, 19.4, 14.7 and 5.4 percent respectively.


This type of visitor contributed most to the increase of visitor arrivals for the period October to December.  Day-tripper numbers grew by 22 percent for the quarter, with the month of November recording the largest increase of 45 percent followed by December with 24 percent over the corresponding period of 2003.  The month of October was the only period when excursionist arrivals fell during the quarter.

Blowing Point had the largest number in arrivals for this type of visitor.  14,185 excursionists passed through this port.  11 percent entered through Sandy Ground and 1 percent of overall excursionists entered via the airport.

The U.S.A. was the country from where most excursionists originated, but the United Kingdom recorded the largest percentage increase in excursionist arrivals of 82 percent for this period compared to 2003.  Arrivals from Canada and Germany were up 15 percent, and 59 percent respectively over 2003.


Cruise Passengers

33 small sized cruise vessels visited Anguilla between January and March 2004 with an overall passenger total of 4,040 persons. Each vessel carried on average a total of 122 passengers.  This compares to the 1,382 passengers who arrived on 24 vessels for the same period last year, with each carrying an average of 58 passengers.

While during the period April to June 2004, 12 mid sized cruise vessels made calls to Anguilla.  There was an overall passenger total of 1,524 with each vessel carrying on average a total of 127 passengers.  This compares to the 33 vessels that made ports of calls to Anguilla during the same period last year with an overall passenger total of 610.

October to December 2004 saw 4 mid sized cruise vessels making calls to Anguilla.  There was an overall passenger total of 819 with each vessel carrying on average a total of 205 passengers.  This compares to the 26 vessels that made ports of calls to Anguilla during the same period last year with an overall passenger total of 1,772.



This report along with other Tourism Data, are available at the Government of Anguilla’s website: http://gov.ai/statistics/tourism.htm