The number of visitors headed to Macau increased 9.8 percent year-on-year in 2018, reaching a total of 35.8 million in 2018.
On Wednesday, the MGTO held its annual press conference, giving a retrospective overview of Macao’s tourism performance over the year, and announcing its plans for 2019.
According to preliminary data, Mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan region remained Macao’s top three visitor source markets, all of which registered increases in visitor volume.
More than 25 million visitors came from mainland China in the year, an increase of 13.8 percent, with a majority coming from the Guangdong Province.
Visitor arrivals from Hong Kong and Taiwan region rose by 2.6 percent and 0.1 percent respectively, while Korea continued to rank first among international markets, contributing over 810,000 visitors to Macao last year.
Visitor arrivals from Japan and the Philippines both exceeded 310,000, whereas visitor arrivals from the United States, the only long-haul market among the top ten visitor source markets, climbed up by 8.3 percent.
The year also saw a continued three-year uptrend of overnight-stay visitor arrivals, growing 7.2 percent year-on-year and accounting for 51.7 percent of total visitor arrivals.
Total visitor expenditure in the first eight months of the year also saw an increase of 11.9 percent, reaching US$29.8 billion.
During the press conference, MGTO Director Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes noted that the local tourism industry was bolstered by the opening of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge in late 2018.
She also touched on plans to trial the use of big data to track tourist numbers, which will happen during the Chinese New Year period.