Samoa has enjoyed a healthy year with a record number of overseas guests visiting the Treasured Islands in 2012.
Based on arrival cards for the year, an increase in overall travel to Samoa of 5.5% have been recorded, with Holiday travel up by 20.4% and Business travel clocking in at 24.2% respectively.
Australia continues to play a major role in increasing travelers with strong growth from both markets, with an increase of over 25% in Holiday travel and 29% for Business.
Overall growth ex Australia was recorded at a growth of almost 12% YOY.
Adele Leathan, from Samoa Tourism Authority Australia says that Samoa is in the cusp of incredible growth with more and more Australians discovering Samoa as anemerging destination and all the unique experiences it has to offer.
“Australia’s holiday and leisure numbers are up 25.2%, an overall increase of 11.7% YOY. December holiday/leisure market reflected an increase of nearly 38%, so it’s exciting for us to see that despite working within a challenging environment, that Aussies are appreciating what Samoa has to offer”. “Our Aussie visitors continue to be mesmerized by our pristine uncrowded beaches, gorgeous waterfalls and natural attractions such as To Sua Ocean Trench andPapaseea Sliding Rocks. They love swimming with the sea turtles either at their natural habitat at Namua Island or the sanctuary in Savaii and of course, no trip is complete without a visit to Robert Louis Stevenson’s House in Vailima! Aussies go back home raving about their experiences which makes Samoa the hottest emerging destination in theSouth Pacific” says Adele.
The growth has sparked new developments in Samoa especially on the south side of the island with plans of a new wharf and possibly an airport on the pipeline. New resorts are popping up on scenic spots along the coast to take advantage of the spectacular scenery such as the 4.5 star Aga Reef Resort, Saletoga Sands Resort and Spa as well as the much anticipated opening of of Return to Paradise Beach Resort set to open its doors in late2013.
Established resorts are also upgrading facilities, most exciting of all being the return of surf icon Sa’Moana Surf Resort and of course, Coconuts Resort and Spa’s overwater fales to Samoa. These rooms will offer a spectacular view of the Pacific and are set to open in time for Samoa’s 2013 Independence Day celebrations.