Jamaica Records Record Winter Tourist Season

With a record winter tourist season on the horizon and 10 consecutive quarters of growth posted, Jamaica is reporting visitor arrivals of approximately 4.1 million for 2023. This represents a 16% increase over the previous year’s numbers and a 7.5% increase over 2019 pre-pandemic numbers. Of this total, more than half of the island’s visitors are from the U.S. alone at approximately 3 million.

“Jamaica continues to break records in terms of tourism arrivals in a spectacular pattern of growth,” said the Hon. Edmund Bartlett, Minister of Tourism, Jamaica. “It is deeply gratifying to remain a top destination of choice among travelers internationally as well as from our primary source market, the U.S., and maintain our position as one of the world’s leading tourism destinations. Based on arrival figures to date, we fully expect to post an 11th consecutive quarter of significant expansion.”

Donovan White, Director of Tourism, Jamaica Tourist Board, added, “With a 42% repeat visitor rate overall complementing our remarkable visitor arrivals growth, we are confident that 2024 will be yet another record-breaking year. In addition, we continue to add new airlift from key gateways and will have a number of new hotels opening throughout the year to support our tourism growth trajectory.”  

In 2024, Jamaica expects to add 2,000 new rooms to its hotel stock with the debuts of the first 1,000 rooms of the 2,000-room Princess Grand Jamaica, the 753-room Riu Palace Aquarelle and the 450-room Unico Hotel in Montego Bay. From the U.S. alone, Jamaica will welcome new service between Miami and Ocho Rios by American Airlines starting February 24 as well as a new non-stop flight from Cleveland to Montego Bay’s Sangster International Airport by Frontier starting on March 9.

Each year, Jamaica hosts a number of mega events that drive tourism arrivals including Rebel Salute in January, Blue Mountain Coffee Festival in March, Carnival in April, Reggae Sumfest in July, and the Jamaica Food and Drink Festival in November, to name just a few.

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The Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB), founded in 1955, is Jamaica’s national tourism agency based in the capital city of Kingston. JTB offices are also located in Montego Bay, Miami, Toronto and London. Representative offices are located in Berlin, Barcelona, Rome, Amsterdam, Mumbai, Tokyo and Paris.

In 2024, TripAdvisor® ranked Jamaica the #7 Best Honeymoon Destination in the World and the #19 Best Culinary Destination in the World. In 2023, the JTB was declared ‘World’s Leading Cruise Destination’ and ‘World’s Leading Family Destination’ for the fourth consecutive year by the World Travel Awards, which also named it named “Caribbean’s Leading Tourist Board” for the 15th consecutive year, “Caribbean’s Leading Destination” for the 17th consecutive year, and the “Caribbean’s Leading Cruise Destination” in the World Travel Awards – Caribbean.’ In addition, Jamaica was awarded six gold 2023 Travvy Awards, including ‘Best Honeymoon Destination’ ‘Best Tourism Board – Caribbean,’ ‘Best Destination – Caribbean,’ ‘Best Wedding Destination – Caribbean,’ ‘Best Culinary Destination – Caribbean,’ and ‘Best Cruise Destination – Caribbean’ as well as two silver Travvy Awards for ‘Best Travel Agent Academy Program’ and ‘Best Wedding Destination – Overall.’’ It also received a TravelAge West WAVE award for ‘International Tourism Board Providing the Best Travel Advisor Support’ for a record-setting 12th time. Jamaica is home to some of the world’s best accommodations, attractions and service providers that continue to receive prominent global recognition and the destination is routinely ranked among the best to visit globally by prestigious international publications.

For details on upcoming special events, attractions and accommodations in Jamaica go to the JTB’s Website at www.visitjamaica.com or call the Jamaica Tourist Board at 1-800-JAMAICA (1-800-526-2422). Follow the JTB on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and YouTube. View the JTB blog at www.islandbuzzjamaica.com.  

About the author

Linda Hohnholz