Published on Sunday, February 17, 2019

Another record year for Singapore tourist arrivals

Singapore posted record tourist arrivals and spending for the third straight year in 2018.

It welcomed 18.5 million visitors, up 6.5% although spending growth slowed to just 1% with $27.1 billion.

The Singapore Tourism Board pointed to two high profile drivers - The US-North Korea summit held in the city state last year and the release of Hollywood flick 'Crazy Rich Asians.'

They both created huge marketing value to Singapore, said STB chief executive Keith Tan.

"We were fortunate to have benefited from a confluence of positive factors such as strong Asia-Pacific travel demand, increased flight connectivity to Singapore, and various high-profile events," he said.

Continuing the frugal trend, visitor spending on shopping was down by 14%, while spending on F&B and accommodation also dipped.

However, spending rose on sightseeing, entertainment and gaming.

Almost all of Singapore's top 15 source markets showed increases with the US, UK, India and Vietnam growing most.

China remained top market with 3.4 million visitors.

Cruise traffic surged 35% to 1.87 million with India the big growth market for fly-cruises, growing by nearly one-third in 2018.


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