Curaçao achieves remarkable tourism success in 2023

January 15, 2024

WILLEMSTAD – January 15, 2024 – The Curaçao Tourist Board (CTB) proudly announces a historic milestone in tourism, marking 2023 as the best record-breaking year for stayover tourism arrivals. In total Curaçao welcomed 582,409 stayover visitor arrivals in 2023, which is a 19% growth compared to the year 2022. December 2023 stands out as the most exceptional month in terms of visitation, with a stunning surge in arrivals, setting an all-time high in one single month. CTB registered a total of 63,390 stayover arrivals in December, a 41% growth compared to December 2022.

The image below shows the monthly performance of 2023 compared to the monthly target and 2022 arrivals.

December 2023, a month of triumph:

December 2023 proved to be a crowning achievement, with a record-breaking 63,390 stayover arrivals. This remarkable figure reflects a substantial 41% increase compared to December 2022, solidifying Curaçao’s position as a top-tier travel destination during the festive season.  Key factors driving this growth are airline contributions, new product offering, consistent marketing promotions, strategic collaboration between the public and private sector to name a few. 

The Netherlands visitors: The primary source market played a significant role in the December success, recording an outstanding 29% growth in stayover arrivals. A total of 23,108 Dutch arrivals were greeted in December 2023. The newest addition on the Amsterdam route with Corendon Airlines, played a pivotal role in the heightened December performance. Collaborative efforts of KLM and TUI, who expanded their services during the peak month, further contributed to the positive outcome of the Dutch market. The outcome of the additional flights out of Amsterdam is exciting after months of downfall in performance out of the Netherlands. The Dutch market accounts for 36.5% of all the tourists who traveled to Curaçao in December, holding its position of being the main source market for Curaçao.

United States of America Visitors: From the United States of America, the market has set a new high in total arrivals of 14,714 visitors in December, a 41% growth compared to December 2022. The share of the second source market was 23.2% in December. Curaçao has welcomed a remarkable total of 141,175 US arrivals in 2023. The growth out of the US market is 51% compared to 2022, contributing to a spectacular record-breaking tourism year for Curaçao. Air service development out of the USA was notable during the year, with JetBlue servicing Curaçao with 5 weekly flights instead of 3. At the end of the year, we celebrated the return of Delta Air Lines connecting Atlanta with Curaçao. United Airlines starting the service to Curaçao earlier this winter, and American Airlines connecting Charlotte daily instead of once weekly.

Colombia Visitors: The Colombian market celebrated a triumphant conclusion to the year, achieving record-breaking arrivals in December with an outstanding 76% growth, totaling 5,405 Colombians visitors. The overall annual arrivals for Colombian visitors in 2023 reached an impressive 39,414 stayover arrivals (38% growth), showcasing a substantial increase in affinity for Curaçao among Colombian visitors. Avianca amped its service since October from 8 to 11 weekly flights out of Bogota, and Copa went from 4 weekly to daily end of April 2023.

Canada Visitors: The fourth source market, Canada, recorded an extraordinary total of 32,256 arrivals in 2023, marking an impressive 165% growth. December proved to be a strong month, with 4,674 Canadians visitors, reflecting a 35% increase compared to December 2022. The great performance out of Canada is mainly because of consistent promotion commitment towards the market with year-round three weekly service out of Toronto with Air Canada. In addition, the increase capacity with Air Canada and WestJet in the last months of the year showed a great spike in stayover arrivals.

Brazilian Visitors: The fifth source market, Brazil, concluded the year with a notable 26,815 Brazilian visitors, a 164% growth in comparison with the year 2022. Out of Brazil we have welcomed a total of 3,665 stayover visitors in December 2023, which is a 257% increase compared to December 2022. The success in the Brazilian market can be attributed to consistent promotional efforts, with 2023 witnessing the inaugural of Azul airlines. Azul’s direct service from Belo Horizonte started with a weekly frequency and expanded to 2x weekly service by the end of the year. This strategic move has significantly contributed to positive results, showcasing the fruitful collaboration of all stakeholders working together. Next to Azul Airlines other connecting options through Panama with Copa or Bogota with Avianca, shows positive outcome for Curaçao.

The images below show the performance of each region compared to 2022, including the share of the total arrivals and the performance of the top 5 countries, including their top 3 states of residence of our visitors.

Stayover, cruise, and day trippers:

Altogether 180,526 visitors were welcomed in December 2023. As mentioned before 63,390 stayover arrivals were registered arriving through CUR airport. These visitors stayed at least one night with a maximum of 90 days. Another 2,452 arrivals were registered via CUR airport, however departing the same day of arrival, also known as day trippers.

According to the Curaçao Ports Authority, a total of 114,684 cruise visitors are registered in December. The total number of arrivals in December is 20% more compared to December 2022 when we welcomed a total of 95,891 visitors.

During the year 2023, the total number of arrivals amounted to 1.3 million consisting of (582,409 stayover, 19,763-day trippers and 710,769 cruise visitors). In 2022 we recorded a total of 1 million visitors.

To conclude, Curaçao celebrates the diversity of its source markets and the collaborative efforts with all stakeholders that have led to these remarkable achievements in 2023. The continuous growth in arrivals from all source markets exemplifies the global appeal and accessibility to our island. 2023 has been a year, where we have opened new air service gateways to our island and expended more frequency from existing gateways. We have broadened our product offering with new accommodations, restaurants, and attractions, diversifying options for all our visitors. All of this in combination with strategic partnerships contributed to the success of 2023. As we reflect, we look forward to building upon these achievements and welcoming even more visitors from around the world in 2024.

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