Figures released today by the province show tourism performance for the month of August was very similar to the same month last year, and that’s reason to be optimistic, says Tourism Minister Robert Henderson.
“Our total overnight stays are very close to what they were last August, and last August was one of the best we’ve had in the last five years, so I am happy to see that we didn't regress, but actually maintained that strength,” Henderson said. “All told, overnight stays are still up 2.3 per cent on the year and many operators are saying September was the best in years.”
In total, room nights sold came out 0.6 per cent ahead of last August, while site nights sold at local campgrounds were down 1.2 per cent. Traffic at the Confederation Bridge was up an impressive 3.8 per cent, while the Charlottetown Airport and Northumberland Ferries reported modest increases in traffic.
There were twice as many cruise ship visits as there were last August and motor coach visits were up just over 42 per cent. Museums also saw modest to large increases in visitation. Non-member golf rounds were down 5.2 per cent.
“Last August was one of the best months the Island has seen in terms of weather in the last 20 years, so it’s not surprising to see a slight drop in site nights sold at campgrounds and in golf rounds played, and a slight increase in room nights sold this August,” the minister said. “And with the tremendous success of this year’s Fall Flavours Festival, there is lots of room for optimism about the overall success of the industry in 2013."