Macao recorded 1.048 million Chinese New Year (CNY) visitor arrivals between Monday and Saturday last week, an increase of 27.4 percent compared with last year’s CNY holiday period, the Macao Government Tourist Office (MGTO) announced on Sunday.
According to MGTO data, Thursday – the third day of the Chinese New Year – recorded the highest number of visitor arrivals last week, 226,874, up 22.6 percent from the lunar calendar’s same day last year.
Mainlanders accounted for 73.3 percent of all visitor arrivals during the six-day period.
A total of 168,767 visitors arrived via the new Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge (HKZMB) checkpoint, accounting for 16.1 percent of the total number of visitor arrivals between Monday and Saturday.
The mega-bridge checkpoint has quickly grown into Macao’s second busiest checkpoint. The 55-km-long bridge opened last October.
Some 48.8 percent of all visitors arrived via the Barrier Gate land-border checkpoint, traditionally Macao’s busiest border crossing.
The number of visitor arrivals at the Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal stood at 124,050.
The mainland’s “Golden Week” CNY holiday ended on Sunday. In Macao, the first, second and third day of the Chinese New Year were public holidays. The Year of the Pig began on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, MGTO Director Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes predicted late last week a CNY visitor record, adding that the expected number was “much beyond our expectations”. MGTO officials had forecast an increase in CNY visitors of around 10 percent.
Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of a public function, Senna Fernandes attributed the growth in CNY visitors to the new bridge offering cheaper travel than by ferry. She predicted an increase of CNY visitors from Hong Kong by about 30 percent, due to the convenience of travelling by bus between Macao and Hong Kong.