Friday, April 19, 2024
HomeIntelligenceDeep DiveMacau welcomed 900k tourists during CNY with 97% hotel occupancy   

Macau welcomed 900k tourists during CNY with 97% hotel occupancy   

As of 5 pm on February 14th, Macau has received 877k tourists, with the hotel occupancy rate reaching 97 percent this week.

The Chinese New Year (CNY) Golden Week falls from February 10th to 17th. This means that within four and a half days out of the eight-day holiday, Macau’s visitor arrivals volume is already very close to authorities’ projection of 1 million tourists.

AGB has learned that on February 12th, the third day of the CNY holiday, Macau received 217,448 tourists, marking the highest daily visitor arrivals tally since the pandemic and the second-highest daily visitor tally in history.

The highest daily visitor tally in Macau’s history was made on February 7th, 2019, with 226,326 visitors, also during the CNY break.

Head of the Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO), Helena de Senna Fernandes, told a local media outlet that the visitor volume is better than during the October Golden Week, and she believes the tourist tally will surpass 1 million. She also reveals that Macau hotels recorded encouraging booking numbers; in the first two days of this week (12-13), the overall hotel occupancy rate reached 97 percent.

Macau, CNY, Chinese New Year, Tourism, hotel occupancy

Upside for GGR

The surge in visitor numbers aligns closely with the Macao Government Tourism Office’s forecast of 120,000 visitors per day from February 10th to 17th. The investment bank CLSA believes that this uptick in visitations signals a potential upside for the region’s Gross Gaming Revenue (GGR) forecast for February.

In an investment memo sent after an on-site visit to Macau’s casinos, analysts Jeffrey Kiang and Leo Pan note that the observed robust foot traffic at borders and the four integrated resorts support upside risk to Macau’s GGR in February versus their forecast of MOP19.8 billion ($2.4 billion), which is 2 percent above January’s data despite February having only 29 days.

As a reference, Macau delivered a GGR of MOP19.5 billion in October 2023 (with 31 days), while monthly visitations were 86 percent of October 2019’s level.

In comparison with the 2019 CNY period with the first day’s tourist data, visitations track 87 percent of 2019 visitations during the first three days of CNY.

CLSA notes that the most commonly seen minimum bet for baccarat tables was MOP1,000 ($124), while tables with higher minimum bets (MOP2,000, MOP3,000, and MOP5,000) were notably occupied on Monday afternoon.

Besides baccarat, the research team also observes that Sic Bo (which generally commands a higher house edge than baccarat and a minimum bet of MOP500) is a popular table game among players at Venetian, Londoner, Parisian, and Studio City.

‘Slot machines and live multi-game terminals were also popular,’ it wrote.

Viviana Chan
Viviana Chan
Viviana Chan is an editor, interpreter, and journalist. With over a decade of experience, she writes in English, Chinese, and Portuguese. Viviana started her career in Macau-based newspapers, where she became passionate about the region's social, financial, and cultural development. Her writing focuses on the economy, emerging industries, gaming development, political affairs, and cross cultural-exchange in the business and cultural domains. She is avid for news and eager to discover and cover stories that generate public relevance.