- Airport busier, while marine traffic dips
- Convention business in St. John's is extending tourist season
The summer tourism season in Newfoundland and Labrador was not the sunniest on record but all that rain, drizzle and fog did not dampen business too badly.
The final figures haven’t been added up but some numbers are in.
For instance, air traffic and occupancy rates were up by the end of July. Marine traffic and visitors coming into the province by car, however, were down.
Here is what the department of Tourism, Culture and Recreation has posted on its website:
- Airport passenger movements at the province’s major airports reached 1,156,215 for the period ending July 2011, an increase of 6.5 per cent over 2010 levels.
- Available provincial accommodations occupancy rate reached 49.0 per cent for the period ending July 2011, an increase from 48.3% reported the previous year.
- Marine Atlantic passenger movements (both directions) reached 192,144 to the end of July 2011 a decrease of 4.2 per cent over 2010 levels.
- The number of non-resident automobile visitors to the province reached 48,828 to the end of July 2011, a decrease of 6.3 per cent over the same time period of last year.
But that's not the whole picture. Some in the tourism industry say the season is not yet over, and see the season now running from May to October.
This fall, unusually late icebergs believed to be from Greenland’s Petermann Glacier are drawing record numbers of visitors to the northeast coast.
In St. John's it's been difficult to book a hotel room in September due to continuing growth in the convention business.