UNWTO World Tourism Barometer statistics on first half 2017

The Americas continued to enjoy positive results across most destinations in the rst half of 2017, with international arrivals up 3%. South America (+6%) and Central America (+5%) led growth, followed by the Caribbean (+4%). Results in North America (+2%) were weighed down by a 4% decrease in arrivals in the United States, the region’s largest destination. Strong US outbound ows continued to fuel growth across the region, thanks to a robust US dollar and economy. An increase in air connectivity also attracted more tourists from overseas markets to the region.

In South America (+6%), Uruguay (+27%), Colombia (+20%), Chile (+17%) and Paraguay (+12%) boasted double-digit growth. Intraregional demand remained strong with outbound tourism from Brazil and Argentina on the rise. Arrivals in Ecuador (+9%) rebounded, while Peru recorded 4% more arrivals. Inbound data for 2017 from major destinations Brazil and Argentina have not yet been reported.

Nicaragua (+26%) and Guatemala (+13%) led results in Central America (+5%). Costa Rica, the subregion’s largest destination, reported a 3% increase in arrivals, while the second largest, Panama, suffered a 10% decline. Belize (+8%), El Salvador (+6%) and Honduras (+3%) recorded positive results as well.

The Caribbean (+4%) saw solid performance in major destination the Dominican Republic (+6%), while Jamaica (+4%) and Puerto Rico (+3%) also posted positive results. Data for Cuba is still pending, but the trend is reportedly also upward. Results in smaller island destinations were more mixed. Growth in Dominica (+15%), Bermuda (+13%), Barbados and Saint Lucia (both +8%) was above the subregional average, while other small Caribbean islands reported weaker growth.

In North America (+2%), Mexico (+12%) and Canada (+6%) continued to enjoy strong demand from the US, as well as from overseas markets. By contrast, the United States itself reported a 4% decline in the first quarter of 2017, with arrivals from Canada up, but declines from Mexico and the majority of overseas markets in Europe, the Middle East and Latin America.

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Photo: Ruins of the Ciudad Perdida Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta Colombia.