The average daily number of visitor arrivals to Macau during the upcoming Labour Day Golden Week holiday period is likely to increase by around 20 percent compared with a previous peak earlier this month, and is therefore likely to surpass the 40,000 mark. That is according to a forecast from the city’s police.
A police representative explained in a press conference that one reason for the positive forecast was that authorities in mainland China had not introduced any additional travel restrictions nor issued statements advising people to avoid travelling during the upcoming holiday period.
China’s State Council has designated the first five days of May as the Labour Day break for this year. Mainland China currently has a quarantine-free travel bubble with Macau, and is presently the main source of Macau’s tourists.
Macau recorded on 18 April more around 36,500 visitor arrivals, the highest daily figure since the start of the pandemic in early 2020, according to police data.
Recent comment by executives from gaming operators corroborates the forecast from the police for a boost in tourism during the Labour Day Golden Week. Hubert Wang, president and chief operating officer of MGM China Holdings Ltd, said in a conference call with analysts on Wednesday that consumer demand for the MGM properties regarding the upcoming holiday period, was “pretty strong”.
The firm expected its hotel business “to reach almost full occupancy, similar to what we saw two years ago”. According to Mr Wang, customer demand for the upcoming Golden Week was higher than seen recently during the Chinese New Year holiday break or the October Golden Week last year.
As of Monday, a number of luxury hotels in Macau casino resorts were already sold out for at least three nights of the five-day break surrounding the Labour Day holiday season, according to data collated at the time by GGRAsia from official hotel booking websites.
In comments to Hong Kong-based Chinese-language media outlet the Hong Kong Economic Journal, Ambrose So Shu Fai, vice-chairman and chief executive of Macau casino operator SJM Holdings Ltd, said Macau’s gaming industry might see further sequential improvement in mass gaming volume during the Labour Day holiday period, with average daily casino gross gaming revenue possibly reaching “MOP400 million” (US$50 million).
During February’s Chinese New Year Golden Week holiday period, Macau recorded a daily average of fewer than 13,000 visitor arrivals, according to government data. The Chinese New Year Golden Week was the most recent week-long holiday for mainland Chinese consumers. The lacklustre result was, according to a number of analysts, attributed to factors including requests – and other measures – from mainland China officials for residents there to avoid travelling during their February break.
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“We see that basically the ‘golden’ periods [for Macau's casino industry] are all concentrated in the second half of this year”
Lei Wai Nong
Macau’s Secretary for Economy and Finance