04 March, 2010

Visitor arrivals to Samoa increase

Samoa welcomed 5.4 percent more visitors in 2009 compared to the year before, the Samoa Tourism Authority announced this month.

The tourism body said the country received 128,804 visitors last year, injecting WST304.3 million into the economy, a marked improvement over the 122,163 visitors it received in 2008.

Samoa also received two more cruise ships during the year than in 2008, with 17 cruise ships bringing in 16,633 visitors.

New Zealand, Australia and American Samoa were the top three visitor arrivals markets while Holiday and VFR was the top visitor market a 77 percent share.

Air New Zealand and Polynesian Blue dominated the travelling traffic with a 68 percent market share.

The tourism industry directly employed 5400 people during the year, representing 10 percent of total employment.

"The year 2009 has proven that though Samoa has gone through various obstacles including the global crisis and natural disaster such as the Tsunami, the destination still was able to cope given its ability to maintain its standards and focus, in increasing its marketing efforts especially in the main markets," said Samoa Tourism Authority.

SOURCE: E-Travelblackboard