Both tourism receipts and visitor arrivals for 2017 attained record highs for the second time in two years.
Tourism receipts rose by 3.9 per cent to S$26.8 billion, due primarily to growth in visitor arrivals across all top 10 markets and higher visitor arrivals from high-spending markets such as China, South Korea, United States (US) and United Kingdom (UK).
Visitor arrivals increased by 6.2 per cent to 17.4 million, with 13 of the top 15 markets showing growth. China became Singapore tourism largest market. China generated 3.23 million of arrivals into Singapore, taking over Indonesia for the first time. 40% of all Chinese travellers come from ‘First-Tier’ cities.
Indonesia grew last year by 2% generating 2.95 million travellers. India came third with 1.27 million arrivals.
The bulk of the growth in visitors arrivals came from China (+13%) and India (+16%). However, strong growth was also recorded with Vietnam (+13%), South Korea (+11%) and the USA (+9%). Among countries generating negative growth in arrivals are Hong Kong (-13%) and Thailand (-3%).
Hotel performance was also good: Singapore hotel industry recorded S$3.70 billion last year while average hotel occupancy rate reached 84.7%, up by 1.5 percentage point. The average room rate however declined by 3.3% to S$216. The city records 420 hotels offering 67,084 rooms, up by 5% over 2016. They are currently close to 3,400 rooms in development for 2018 and beyond.
Chief Executive of the Singapore Tourism Board (STB), Mr Lionel Yeo, declared that, “STB is pleased to report a second consecutive year of record tourism performance. The combined efforts of STB and our industry partners yielded strong results, against a context of better-than-expected global economic recovery, continued growth in Asia-Pacific travel and increased flight and cruise connectivity to Singapore. Together with significant initiatives to support industry innovation and competitiveness, we made excellent progress in 2017 towards our vision of quality tourism growth.”