The state of Ceará in Northeast Brazil is getting ready for its busiest July ever. Figures just released by the tourist board point to more tourists, higher income and increased hotel occupancy across the state. Part of the reason behind the busy July for Ceará tourism comes from the new flight hub at Fortaleza Airport.
July is high season for Ceará tourism. The state enjoys a pleasant year-round climate and at the time of year when Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo are in the depths of winter, many Brazilians choose to seek the warm sunshine in the Northeast.
More tourists bring more money
The latest figures released by the Ceará tourist board (SETUR in Brazilian), based on flight tickets already sold and hotel reservations, point to a bumper July. Some 440,000 visitors are expected, an increase of 11% on the same month last year.
Tourist spending will rise in tandem with increased visitor numbers. This year, tourists will spend R$1.04 billion, compared to R$912 million last year, a rise of 14.3%. A similar increase is expected in revenue from Ceará tourism, which the authorities forecast will top R$182 billion in July.
Higher hotel and holiday let occupancy
Hotel occupancy is expected to register around 82% during July, up 2.64% in 12 months. “This figure includes the many Europeans who have chosen the state to practise their favourite sporting activities such as kitesurf,” explained Ivana Bezerra, vice-president of the Ceará branch of the Brazilian Hotel Industry Association (ABIH-CE).
However, SETUR officials pointed out that along with increased hotel occupancy they are anticipating many tourists to opt for holiday lets rented through platforms such as Airbnb. “We’re also expecting good occupancy levels in our hotels,” said Arialdo Pinho, head of SETUR, quoted in O Povo broadsheet. “That said, we’re also getting lots of visitors who choose holiday lets.”
Fortaleza Airport driving factor behind Ceará tourism
One of the main factors behind the marked increase in Ceará tourism is the Air France/KLM/Gol flight hub recently inaugurated at Fortaleza Airport. Although the new flight services only started in mid-May, the state is already seeing the effects of the increase in passenger traffic.
The authorities expect a rise of 12.5% in passengers during July compared to last year. Behind the sharp increase are the new direct flights to Paris and Amsterdam (operated by Air France and KLM respectively) and the uptick in domestic flights. Fortaleza Airport now offers some 46 new flights to other Brazilian state capitals with more planned this year. As a result, Ceará tourism is not only looking ahead to a busy July but to a busy 2018 in general.
(Source: O Povo)