Visitors arrivals to the CNMI increased 8 percent in June 2016 compared to June 2015. According to the Marianas Visitors Authority, arrivals to the islands of Saipan, Tinian, and Rota registered 41,502 visitors in June 2016, compared to 38,342 visitors received in June 2015.
Arrivals from Korea posted their strongest month so far this year, jumping 33 percent in June to 18,556 visitors. June 9 marked the launch of direct daily flights from Seoul by Korean Air’s low-cost carrier Jin Air. Also, Asiana Airlines has returned to double daily service for Incheon-Saipan in the summer season. Based on the increased airlift out of the market, arrivals from Korea to the CNMI are projected to remain extremely strong through the end of this year, before rising even further with the anticipated launch of additional new airlift from two new airlines at the end of the year.
Arrivals from China increased 2 percent compared to June 2015 to 15,145 visitors.
Philippine Airlines launched regularly scheduled service from Manila on June 15, and Hong Kong Airlines launched charter flights from Hong Kong to Saipan on July 6, with both of these new flights heavily booked by mainland Chinese visitors. Dynamic Airways launched new charter flights from Nanjing to Saipan during the month of July, as well as from Hangzhou to Saipan from July 16. As a result, the number of Chinese visitors this summer to the CNMI is expected to rapidly rise.
Arrivals from Japan fell 25 percent to 4,708 visitors as the NMI continues to feel the effect of Delta Air Lines cutting its Narita to Saipan night flight last October, a move that dropped airlift from the Japan market to just one daily flight. The MVA’s Japan office has implemented a major YouTube campaign directing consumers to special promotional pages on the Japan website, where information about each travel agency’s tour products to the CNMI are introduced, together with a $50 coupon present campaign. The MVA is working hand-in-hand with Delta Air Lines and key agents to launch a large scale promotional campaign designed to secure the re-instatement of the second Narita flight by Delta during the coming months. (PR)