WILLEMSTAD – January 10, 2023 – The Curaçao Tourist Board (CTB) is reporting a record-breaking number of stayover visitor arrivals in 2022. It is the first time Curaçao came close to half million stayover visitors, by just being 10,442 visitors short. In overall, CTB welcomed a total of 489,558 stayover visitor arrivals in 2022. The first quarter of the year started slow. During that period, we still dealt with the Omicron variant and travel restrictions were in place for some countries. Despite the slow start, the original target to welcome 375,000 visitors in 2022 was realistic and feasible.
CTB saw an increase in stayover arrivals as of April 2022 from all countries of focus. July 2022 was the best performing month of the year, when we welcomed 48,246 stayover arrivals. The last quarter of 2022 remained stable recording a minimum of 44,000 visitors per month. With the achieved performance of 2022 CTB proudly announce it has recuperated from the pandemic and even surpassed previous record-breaking arrivals recorded in 2015, when we welcomed 467,538 stayover visitors.
Last year we have registered record breaking arrivals from the primary countries of focus The Netherlands and United States of America. We have welcomed 237,654 stayover visitors from the Netherlands. In total 278,468 stayover arrivals from Europe are recorded in 2022, also a first. The share of the European visitors in 2022 is 57%.
It is the first time Curaçao has welcomed over 90,000 stayover visitors from the United states of America. Last year a total of 93,428 US visitors flocked to our destination. Altogether, 105,593 North American visitors were welcomed in 2022 to bring the share of the North American region to 22%.
Colombia ended as the third primary market, recording 28,460 stayover arrivals in 2022. The South American countries in general performed above expectation. From Brazil and Suriname, we have welcomed 10,161 and 6,248 visitors, respectively. The secondary countries Argentina, Ecuador and Uruguay closed the year recording an all-time high performance, namely 3,409, 3,986 and 2,111 visitors respectively. The share from the South American region is 13%.
From the Caribbean region we have welcomed a total of 29,818 visitors. Our neighboring island Aruba was accountable for 10,935 stayover visitors. A total of 8,608 visitors are registered from the other Dutch Caribbean islands.
Overall, we have welcomed 44,923 stayover arrivals in December 2022, which is 101% recovery rate of December 2019. The last month of the year performed as expected by holding on to the high-season trend. Almost half (47%) of the visitors who travelled to Curaçao in December are European visitors. CTB registered in December 17,958, 716 and 653 from The Netherlands, Germany and Belgium, respectively. Information gathered from the Immigration Cards show that European visitors stayed 12.7 nights on average in December 2022.
December 2022 is so far the best performing month from the United States of America. A total of 10,411 stayover arrivals is registered to surpass the July 2022 number of visitors (10,208 US visitors). The average night spent in December from travelers living in North America is 7.6 nights.
From the South American region, we welcomed 5,957 visitors. Fifty-two percent and 17% came from Colombia and Brazil, respectively. The average nigh spent from the region is 8.2 nights.
Out of the Caribbean region, we have welcomed 2,891 stayover visitors in December, primarily from the Dutch Kingdom islands.
There were 43 cruise ship calls and 95,680 cruise visitors for the month of December. Below figure shows the 2022 stayover arrivals by month compared to 2021 and to the benchmark year 2019. With the splendid performance of 2022 CTB brings the comparison to pre-pandemic levels to an end. The focus in 2023 is to continue to work in close collaboration with all the stakeholders to outperform the 2022 performance. The ultimate objective is to welcome at least half million stayover visitors by end of this year.