As reported on balidiscovery.com in the last installment of "Bali by the Numbers" [See: A May Pause on Road to Arrival Totals' Recovery]: "total foreign arrivals to Bali in May 2006 totaled 101,776, a figure that lagged -12.72% behind 116,615 near-record number of arrivals in the same month one year before. Those hoping to see arrival numbers notch another month of improving totals in May were no doubt disappointed; May arrivals slipped statistically as compared to April when month-on-month arrivals were down only -10.65%."
Whether or not this statistical plateau is a momentary pause on the way to better numbers or a prolonged relapse in the Island's recovery efforts will only be borne out by arrival figures over the coming months.
In this installment of "Bali by the Numbers", we take a cursory look at May 2006's arrival performance by major markets.
Traditionally, Bali's largest inbound market, Japan's arrival numbers continue to look promising with May 2006 arrivals only down -21.54% from the same month one year before. The gap in Japanese arrivals continues to narrow with each passing month (down -25.57% in April 2006), fueling hope that Japanese visitors will be back to 2005 levels by July or August when Japan Airlines have promised to resume the full schedule of flights connecting Indonesian and Japan.
The current poor state of Australian-Indonesian relations is reflected in Bali's arrival figures from what is the second-largest inbound market to the Island. After an April 2006 decline of -45.73% for Australian arrivals as compared to April 2005, things got worse in May when arrivals slumped further, down month-on-month to -58.40%.
Current political imbroglios over Papuan refugees and the disaffection by Australian over the handling of Muslim Cleric Abu Bakar Ba'asyir, plus the looming future execution in Bali of two Australian drug smugglers are just some of the tough obstacles ahead on the road to a revival of tourism levels to Bali.
And now, for some good news. Taiwan arrivals are up +45.87% for May 2006 as compared to May 2005. In fact, Taiwanese arrivals began to surpass 2005 levels in April, when arrivals from the Island Nation were up +51.42%.
South Korea also managed to make May 2006 a "crossover month"
in which arrivals began to surpass arrivals from just one year before. May arrivals from South Korea improved +11.31%.
Indonesia's near neighbors in ASEAN lagged -19.67% in May 2006 as compared to May 2005. This is a worsening performance, widening a gap of only -8.12% measured in April 2006.
The Americas – comprising all source markets in North and South America, continued its improvement path in May. May 2006 arrivals from 'The Americas' were down -19.04%, a substantial narrowing from just one month before in April when month-on-month arrivals were down -39.78%.
The picture from Europe remains essentially encouraging with May arrivals down a scant -3.61%, slightly off against April's month-on-month performance which was +1.92% better than the same month one year before. Within Europe, France is emerging as a star in terms of Bali arrivals, improving a massive +20.24 for May 2006 as compared to just one year before.
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