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Macau Inbound Tourism Skyrockets during Golden Week

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Macau's Golden Week remains as popular as ever, with a turnout of 530,312 visitors during the initial four days of the eight-day holiday. This figure equates to an average of 132,578 visitors per day and is set to give the Chinese special administrative region (SAR) the boost it needs.

Visitation Returns to Macau

On Monday, the SAR experienced a surge in visitor numbers, with a 436% increase compared to 2022, bringing the total count for the day to 133,458. However, this figure decreased slightly from the weekend, which saw an influx of over 150,000 individuals entering on both Saturday and Sunday.

During the Golden Week in 2019, a total of 974,337 arrivals were recorded, resulting in an average of 131,191 individuals per day. Contrastingly, 2022 experienced the impact of COVID-19, reducing the arrivals to just 182,000, averaging only 26,000 per day.

Related: Macau Casinos Show Growth in September Revenue

During the current Golden Week, an increase in the number of visitors, amounting to 530,312, has boosted the city's activity. Among the tourist segments, mainland China contributed 385,823 individuals, while 110,990 hailed from Hong Kong.

The start of the week witnessed a surge in mainland arrivals, with Monday alone hosting 108,279 individuals, indicating a 385% increase compared to the same period last year. Hong Kong also experienced a significant influx of visitors, with 18,882 arrivals, boasting a remarkable growth rate of 925%.

The Golden Week holiday will last for eight days, surpassing its usual duration of seven days. This is a result of the perfect alignment between the Mid-Autumn Festival and the national holiday.

Gaming Operators Stay Busy

It's anticipated that Macau's casinos will witness a surge in revenue, thanks to extraordinary initiatives sponsored by the operators. Their upcoming programs will contribute to creating an exceptionally remarkable week break. According to industry analysts, achieving a gold standard during this time will be effortlessly attainable.

In their report, George Choi and Ryan Cheung, two analysts with Citi, projected that the gaming industry would experience a remarkable surge in revenue. They anticipate gross gaming revenue (GGR) reaching the highest point it has been in the past four years, amounting to MOP19 billion (US$2.36 billion). Furthermore, during Golden Week, they estimate a daily average intake of MOP$765 million (US$95 million).

Choi and Cheung projected a significant decline in this figure for the remaining days of the month, estimating it to drop by approximately 25% to MOP575 million (US$71 million) per day. However, this is still much better than the 34% drop in October 2019 experienced as COVID-19 moved in.

According to the experts, the current quarter holds immense promise for all six casino operators as they gear up for an extraordinary and unprecedented schedule. A packed lineup of events has the potential to generate substantial growth in both gaming and non-gaming revenue. Moreover, when these events coincide with the highly anticipated Golden Week, analysts predict a remarkable boost to GGR, forecasting as much as $6.5 billion.

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