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Mexican Caribbean records tourism increase with rebound in Canadian market

Riviera Maya, Q.R. — Quintana Roo maintains its tourism leadership as a world-class destination. The state is ready to welcome the thousands of local, national and international visitors who enjoy its natural beauties, historical and cultural richness, reported Governor Mara Lezama.

Governor Lezama says since the start of the year, tourism figures have increased. Currently the Mexican Caribbean is connected to 124 cities around the world, 40 of which are in the U.S., 21 in Latam, 20 in Europe, 20 in Canada and 23 in Mexico.

The recovery of the Canadian market had a considerable rebound between January to April 2023 compared to 2022. Canadian passengers during the first four months totaled 629,822, an increase of 68.4 percent during that same period in 2022.

International air passengers into Quintana Roo registered an increase of 14.5 percent. Figures increased from over 3.3 million from January to April 2022 to more than 3.8 million in the same period of 2023.

Domestic passengers also recorded an increase of 19.6 percent compared to 2022, from 1.5 million from January to April 2022 to 1.8 million in the same period of 2023.

Other figures around the state show an increase in archaeological zone visits. From January to April 2023, visits increased by 32.2 percent compared to the same period in 2022. The amount of visitors rose from 607,579 visitors to 803,034.

Cruise ship activity has also seen an increase. From January 1 to June 25 of this year, 618 cruise ships arrived, which represents 10.4 percent more than in the same period of 2022 with a 73.3 percent increase in passengers already this year. During 2023, estimates show an arrival of 1,150 ships with 3,808,445 passengers.

Ferry passengers along federal routes have shown an increase. The Cozumel – Playa del Carmen route increased by 16.4 percent from January to June. On the Puerto Juárez – Isla Mujeres route during the same period, more than 1.5 million people traveled representing an 11.5 percent increase in passengers.

Although there was significant growth in air tourism to Cancun, in the United States, Colombia, Brazil and the United Kingdom markets, more than half a million fewer tourists were reported between March and May of this year compared to the same months from 2022, reported the Anahuac Tourism Research and Competitiveness Center (Cicotur).

At a press conference, Francisco Madrid, who heads Cicotur, said that according to studies of tourist activity in the Mexican Caribbean, there is a clear slowdown in the aforementioned markets. However, in contrast, the Canadian segment has increased.

“At the end of May, a 4.5 percent growth in international tourism to Mexico was reported with close to 392,000 additional tourists largely thanks to the Canadian market,” he specified.

“However, there are reasons for the strong slowdown, particularly from the U.S.”

He explained that at the beginning of 2023, there was a significant growth in air tourism partly because in the same months of 2022, people were still dealing with Covid-19.

After Covid-19, people started opting for other Caribbean destinations. Francisco Madrid said some of those reasons for the change include the exchange rate, the return of normalized tourism competition as well as secondary causes such as economic uncertainty and visa policies toward countries such as Brazil.