Singapore tourist arrivals down 7.4 percent

Singapore — Tourist arrivals in March fell 7.4 percent to 1.2 million from a year ago, fueled by a sharp drop in Chinese and Indonesian holidaymakers, said the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) yesterday.

China and Indonesia are two of Singapore’s largest tourism markets.

When compared with year-on-year figures, the number of Chinese tourists fell 21 percent to 130,811, while the figure for Indonesian travelers fell 14.2 percent to 211,338 in March.

Between January and March, arrival figures dropped 6.1 percent to 3.6 million.

The drop in arrivals comes on the back of repeated declines in the months before. Tourist arrivals shrunk 6.9 percent in January and 4 percent in February from the same period a year ago.

Hotel occupancy and average room rates were also affected.

Luxury, upscale and mid-tier hotels saw a respective decline of 5.5, 1.2 and 1.5 percentage points in occupancy rate in March from a year ago. Occupancy rates for budget offerings, however, held steady at 80.2 percent.

Meanwhile, the average room rate for all categories of hotels fell. Rooms in luxury hotels and upscale hotels were cheaper by 2.4 percent to S$439.40 and 3.1 percent to S$262.10 respectively.

Mid-tier options fell 6.3 per cent to S$179.70, whereas budget hotels dipped by 3.5 percent to S$102.30.

The decline in tourist arrival figures come on the heels of a dismal 2014 for the tourism sector. Arrivals fell 3.1 percent — the first decline since 2009 — and spending remained flat compared with the previous year.

The STB had said earlier that it expected visitor arrivals to grow by up to 3 percent this year, and tourism receipts to increase by as much as 2 percent.

To attract more tourists, the STB is launching a S$20 million global marketing campaign, leveraging on Singapore’s Golden Jubilee, in key markets such as China, India, Japan, Vietnam and Indonesia. Source: eTurbonews