July direct foreign arrivals totaling 148,117 represent the strongest ever arrivals for the month of July, setting a new record and defeating the previous best July arrival total established in July 2002 which tallied 147,033 arrivals. Demonstrating rapid recovery from the depressed market performance of just one year before, July 2004 figures improved 32.35% month to month.
Quality Concerns Persist
While strong arrival figures are cited in official circles as proof that Bali's tourism industry is fully recovered from the sudden downturn after the Bali bombing of 2002 and that the new visa on arrival policy has not negatively impacted arrivals, the total foreign direct arrivals presented here do not tell the entire story. Most of the improvement in arrival numbers has resulted from a 101.5% increase in ASEAN arrivals as compared to just 4 years ago in 2001. Meanwhile, European arrivals and arrivals from the Americas continue to lag by more than 30% when compared to their performance in 2001.
In fact, with the notable exception of Australia which has managed to improve 4.48 percent since 2001, those countries required to purchase a visa either before or upon arrival in Bali, all continue to fail to rack up totals resembling their past performance of just 4 years ago.
While ASEAN arrivals are booming they fail to make up for the loss in European and American arrivals in terms of revenue and foreign exchange as these long haul markets traditionally stay longer and spend more when visiting Bali. As a result, average spends and average periods of stay are down by nearly 50% from numbers achieved just four to five years ago.
Coming Next Week
Our series Bali By The Numbers continues next week with detailed breakdowns of direct foreign arrivals to Bali by nationality, demonstrating that those nations required to purchase or obtain visas for visits to Bali generally under-perform arrivals from nations enjoying a more liberal visa facility.
Discovery Tours. Articles may be quoted and reproduced
if attributed to http://www.balidiscovery.com.