The results for the first quarter are in: Mexico set a record for tourism for the first quarter of 2018, according to data from the Mexico Tourism Board shared with Travel Agent. According to the Tourism Board’s latest numbers, a record-breaking 10.6 million tourists visited the destination in the first quarter of 2018, up 12.6 percent over the 9.4 million visitors seen during the same period last year.
During the first quarter 2.9 million visitors from the United States visited Mexico by air, which represents a 4 percent increase over the same period last year. 5.1 million visitors entered the country by land; of these, 4.3 million were border visitors. While the number of border visitors is not broken down by country, the majority (more than 90 percent) came from the United States, a representative of the Mexico Tourism Board said.
The cruise segment was also strong. 2.6 million cruise visitors entered the country in the first quarter of 2018, up 10.4 percent from the same time last year.
All told, the rise in first quarter visitation translated into a 7.2 percent increase in tourism revenue, reaching $6.217 billion.
The numbers were boosted by a particularly strong Easter travel period. March alone saw 4 million visitors, representing a 14.6 percent increase over the same month in 2017, according to the Mexico Tourism Board. Cancun was a particular hotspot over the Easter holidays; separate data from Grupo Aeroportuario del Sureste, which operates the Cancun International Airport, shows that the airport saw 2.08 million arrivals in March, up 14.5 percent over the same month last year. Of those, 1.56 million were international visitors arriving for a vacation, with the top source markets being Toronto, Chicago, New York and Montreal.