The Dominican Republic says it has had "the best tourism record in its history" for September.
In a news release on Tuesday (Oct. 12), the country's Ministry of Tourism said September 2021 showed a higher number of arrivals than in 2018, 2019 and 2020.
In September, the Dominican Republic welcomed a total of 365,544 non-resident visitors, which represents a recovery of 14 per cent in the level of attendance recorded before the COVID-19 pandemic, and more precisely in September 2019, and of 25 per cent by compared to September 2020 figures.
This generated $412 million (USD) in revenue for the country, the Ministry said.
By the numbers
The Minister of Tourism, David Collado, announced that to date, the arrivals of non-resident tourists by plane to the Dominican Republic in 2021 exceed 3.3 million passengers, greater than arrivals for 2019.
He pointed out that the recovery was more marked among non-resident foreign tourists, who stay an average of seven days in the country.
Among the non-resident tourists who arrived in the country in 2021, 79 per cent were of foreign origin and the 21 per cent of Dominican origin.
The strong tourist activity generated an increase in the number of jobs, which reached 162,254 people in more than 7,000 companies for the month of August, or 6,648 employees and 51 additional companies compared to July.
This increase was mainly recorded in tourist accommodation, with more than 4,311 establishments, as well as in catering, with more than 1,800 establishments.
Hotel activity has reached its post-pandemic peak with 87 per cent of rooms in operation, an occupancy rate of 54 per cent on weekdays, and 61 per cent on weekends.
22 per cent of the clientele were of local origin and its attendance rate highlights the positive short-term results.
The easing of travel restrictions allowed the return of historic issuing countries to the Dominican Republic such as Russia, which rose in the ranking of major issuing countries to take second place, just behind the United States.
The other countries in the top four are Spain and Colombia.
According to data presented by MITUR (Ministerio do Turismo), the DR is witnessing a "return to normal in the arrival of non-resident foreign tourists at the Punta Cana airport," which is positioned as the main gateway for the country, followed by Las Americas International Airport and Cibao International Airport, both of which exceeded in 2021 the figures of the reference period in 2019.
According to September statistics, the Dominican Republic hosted 3,694 commercial flights, with an occupancy rate of 71 per cent, operated by 87 airlines from 90 airports and 43 countries.
At the same time, in the maritime sector, 10 cruises were carried out by eight ships, two of which touched Dominican ports during the same trip.
This represents the arrival of 22,572 cruise passengers in 3 different ports, including those of La Romana and Amber Cove, an increase of 3 per cent compared to August.
Finally, airline ticket reservations for the period from October to December 2021 are 12 to 20 per cent higher than those recorded in 2019.
The parallel observed between the state of reservations of plane tickets to the Republic Dominican Republic and the flow of tourist arrivals suggests a significant rebound for the end of the year in the country's recovery dynamic, the ministry said.
"It is estimated that the number of tourist arrivals recorded in October 2019 will be exceeded in October 2021," the Ministry of Tourism said in a statement. "By the end of 2021, arrivals of non-resident tourists in the country are expected to reach 4.8 million passengers."