Marianas Variety

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    Thursday, September 19, 2019-3:19:32P.M.

     

     

     

     

     

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MVA: Visitor arrivals down 19% in April

(MVA) — According to the Marianas Visitors Authority, arrivals to Saipan, Tinian and Rota reached 39,663 visitors in April 2019 compared to 49,198 in April 2018.

Although the figure is 19 percent lower than April 2018, it is also the strongest monthly performance since Super Typhoon Yutu hit the Marianas in October 2018.

With the resumption of T’way Air on March 31, Korea regained its position as the top-performing source market for the Marianas with 17,182 visitors, a 22 percent decrease compared to April 2018 but still the country’s strongest month since Yutu The decline is due to the downsizing of Asiana Airlines’ aircraft and the decreased frequency of Jeju Air flights from Busan to Saipan.

Arrivals from China were 13 percent off last year’s mark at 17,182 visitors in April. The travel season between Lunar New Year and Labor Day in early May is traditionally weak, and the China market is also facing a rising RMB-USD exchange rate as a result of U.S.-China tensions. Package prices to the Marianas in April 2019 were lower than last year, especially in the Hangzhou and Guangzhou markets, but sales were only moderate as the actual travel cost in the Marianas was higher than usual.

Japan posted 2,313 visitors for the month, 50 percent lower than April 2018 when daily direct flights operated between Narita and Saipan. The April figures included two cruise ship arrivals carrying a combined 932 passengers and four charter flights from Japan by Skymark Airlines during Japan’s Golden Week holiday. The airline is also slated to start regular daily flights in July 2019, marking a much-anticipated turnaround for the once-dominant market.