Solomon Islands’ visitor numbers hit record high

Honiara International Airport

International visitor arrivals to Solomon Islands soared in September.

Figures released by the Solomon Islands National Statistics Office show a total of 2,397 international travellers visited Solomon Islands in September — a 67.8 percent increase over the 1,428 visitors recorded for the same month last year.

Solomon Islands Visitors Bureau Chief Executive Officer Josefa Tuamoto said the figure represents the largest monthly intake for the country since the statistics office started recording international arrival figures in 1990.

“This truly represents a watershed moment for the Solomon Islands and keeps us bang on target for a very strong finish to 2017,” Mr Tuamoto said.

Figures for the nine-month period this year show Solomon Islands received a total of 18,507 international visitors, which is an increase of more than 10 percent over the 16,831 figure for January to September 2016. Each of Solomon Islands’ main source markets recorded solid year-on-year growth.

Australian visitation accounted for 37 percent of all arrivals. The 7,317 Australian visitors recorded during the period represents a 7 percent increase from the 6,812 visitors recorded last year.

New Zealand arrivals, buoyed by the All Whites’ FIFA World Cup clash with the Solomon Islands in Honiara, jumped 13 percent in September from 1,136 to 1,286.

The number of visitors from the United States increased 9 per cent from 1,152 to 1,257.

Visitation from Papua New Guinea increased by more than 8 percent, and the number of visitors from Fiji rose by nearly 7 percent.

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