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October 6, 2009
For immediate release
Bridge Traffic up in August
“A combination of nice weather, Canada Games, Old Home Week and other tourism related activities and events brought visitors to PEI in August,” Minister Docherty said. “Nationally, it’s been a challenging time for the tourism industry. As a department, we recognize that while some indicators are up, others are down, and we will continue to work on solutions with industry to address these variations.”
In August, there was an 0.7 percent increase in overnight stays due mainly to campers. Room nights sold was down by 6.7 percent while site nights sold to campers was up 15.1 percent. The air traffic was up 4.5 percent while the ferry traffic in August was down 4.4 percent.
“As our main season draws to a close with a strong fall product offering, including such events as Fall Flavours and Riverdance at the Confederation Centre of the Arts, we are reviewing the season performance year-to-date to prepare for 2010,” Kevin Murphy, Chair of the Tourism Advisory Council commented. “The numbers demonstrate that the majority of our decline may be explained by the decline in room nights sold to United States visitors and other International markets – which stands to reason in the current economic climate, in light of H1N1 concerns and the overall tourism market conditions.”
A large percentage of visitors to Prince Edward Island are Canadians. The majority of those visitors arrive from Nova Scotia, News Brunswick, Quebec and Ontario. Visitors from out west were strong in August.