SOURCE: Jamaica Tourist Board

April 22, 2008 15:04 ET

Jamaica Announces Record Number of Visitors for Winter Travel Season

13 Percent Increase in Arrivals Over Winter '06 - '07

KINGSTON, JAMAICA--(Marketwire - April 22, 2008) - Indications are that the island of Jamaica will have its strongest winter travel season on record. Provisional numbers indicate more than 650,000 stop over arrivals for the 2007/2008 winter season, representing a 13 percent increase over the same period last year, and bringing in a total of $724 million. This reflects a 10 percent increase in tourism revenue from the previous season.

The provisional numbers also show that cruise passenger arrivals increased one percent during the same time period, with 530,393 arrivals. Combined, Jamaica welcomed nearly 1,200,000 visitors this winter season, an increase of 100,000 from last year.

"This record number of tourist arrivals for winter 2007/2008 is an auspicious start to the year for Jamaica's tourism," stated Jamaica's Minister of Tourism, the Hon. Ed Bartlett. "It signifies that we are on track for double digit growth for the remainder of the year. The catalyst for this growth can certainly be attributed to the surge of development in our accommodation sector, the burgeoning attraction sector, the ease of accessibility to Jamaica and the recognition of the amount and diversity of travel experiences to be had in Jamaica."

Jamaica's Minister of Tourism reported these promising figures from the Far East, where he is leading a Jamaican delegation to China and Japan, where he is meeting with officials to discuss tourism investment and development projects. Minister Bartlett is also traveling to Dubai to attend the WTTC World Summit.

About the Jamaica Tourist Board

The Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB), founded in 1955, is Jamaica's national tourism agency based in the capital city of Kingston. The JTB was declared the Caribbean's Leading Tourist and Convention Bureau by the World Travel Awards (WTA) in 2006 and 2007, while Jamaica earned the WTA's vote as the World's Leading Cruise Destination, the Caribbean's Leading Destination and the Caribbean's Leading Cruise Destination.

JTB offices are located in Kingston, Montego Bay, Miami, Toronto and London. Representative offices are located in Düsseldorf, Barcelona, Rome, Amsterdam and Tokyo.

For details on upcoming special events, attractions and accommodations in Jamaica go to the Jamaica Tourist Board's Web site at www.visitjamaica.com, or call the Jamaica Tourist Board at 1-800-JAMAICA (1-800-526-2422).

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