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Macau expects fewer tourists for CNY than for Christmas

The MGTO forecasts  fewer visitors for Chinese New Year.
The MGTO forecasts fewer visitors for Chinese New Year.

Authorities in Macau have forecast fewer visitors for Chinese New Year due to new advice against travel.

Macau.- The Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO) has forecast that the number of visitors during the Chinese New Year holidays will be lower than that seen during Christmas.

According to the MGTO’s director, Maria Helena Senna Fernandes, visitor numbers are likely to be lower due to new advice against travel in China to prevent more Covid-19 infections.

Senna Fernandes said: “We have estimated that on average, the [daily] visitor arrivals for this year’s Chinese New Year break could turn out to be a bit weaker than for the Christmas holiday period”.

Official figures showed that Macau’s average daily visitor arrivals from December 23 to 27 inclusive was 24,503. That marked a 15.5 per cent increase against arrivals in November (21,212) and a 30.5 per cent increase against October (18,774).

China’s State Council has designated February 11 to 17 as the Chinese New Year holiday period for 2021. Typically, it’s a busy period for Macau’s casinos and resorts.

However, Chinese authorities have been advising that people minimise travel across provinces in the upcoming holidays in order to curb the spread of Covid-19.

Fernandes said that Macau’s average daily arrivals so far this month have been just above 10,000, with “better” days recording as many as 20,000.

Macau saw 659,407 visitor arrivals in December, a daily average of 21,271, according to the latest data published by the city’s Statistics and Census Service.

Despite the lower forecast, Fernandes said she hoped to see the city’s hotel occupancy reach “70 to 80 per cent” during the Chinese New Year holiday period.

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