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Gradually Opening the Borders on July 1, 2020 | The First Step to Regaining our Strength

Willemstad, June 24, 2020 – July 1st, 2020 is official. Curaçao is ready to welcome back its first visitors from the European market.Opening the borders and implementing safety & hygiene procedures does not mean that we have overcome this economic crisis or that business as usual is back. It’s the first step to regain our strength and build up our tourism industry. 

CHATA predicts a hotel performance of 20-25% for the tourism industry for summer (July/Aug) 2020. The year to date (January 2020 -May 2020) occupancy for Curacao is 37.6%. Compared to the same period of 2019, this is considered a decrease of 50.5%; from 75.9% in 2019 to 37.6% in 2020. Year to date figures indicate an ADR of $136.54. Compared to 2019, this is a decrease of 21%; from $172.78 to $136.54. When it comes to the RevPAR, the year to date numbers have also shown a decline compared to 2019. The year to date RevPAR in 2019 was $132.24 and in 2020 it decreased with 46.9% to $70.33.

Furthermore, considering the quarantine hotels, occupancy in the month of May was 3.8%, compared to the same month in 2019 (64.9%), this is a decline of 94.1%. Regarding the ADR in May, it was $116.28, compared to the same month in 2019, this is a decrease of 16%, from $138.49 to $116.28. The RevPar in the month of May in 2020 was $4.37, which is a decrease of 95.1% compared to the RevPar of the same month in 2019, which was $89.85. 

This significant decrease in year to date hotel performance is unfortunately a result of the global pandemic measures taken to prevent the spreading of COVID-19. Taking into consideration that for the month of April, Curacao had registered 0 hotel performance. 

Earlier this year, CHATA predicted that it would take roughly 2-3 years for the tourism industry to reach the numbers that were achieved in 2019. “The gradual reopening of the borders will be contributing to the recovery of the industry. We expect that 45% of our room inventory on island will open up its business to focus on the European market. Hence the importance not to stand still but to continue to evaluate the opportunity to move forward with important secondary markets such as the North American and South American market. Tourism is known to be resilient, we are confident that with the right approach and mindset we can be too,” shares CHATA President and CEO, Miles Mercera.

With the limited hotel inventory being operational, a destination hotel occupancy of 50% is expected to be reached by the end of this year. CHATA hopes that the government will continue to support the industry with the NOW program after July 1st, 2020 as the financial crisis is still real for a majority of the business owners and employees despite the gradual opening of the borders. 

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