Many people believe that how the first three months of a year go set the trend for the entire year.
If that trend holds true, it’s going to be a busy fall/winter high season in Los Cabos, ending in what is expected to be a record-breaking year for tourist visitation.
Tourism Numbers Up in Early 2023
For the first three months of 2023, the tourist count in Los Cabos jumped double digits over last year’s strong visitor numbers.
More than 670,000 visitors came to Los Cabos in the January-March time period, an increase of 21 percent over the same period in 2022.
As expected, a full 70% of the visitors continue to come to Los Cabos from the United States. Canada is the second most popular departure location.
This was not entirely unexpected, as the travel experts were citing an increased demand for international travel in response to the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns.
Revenge Travel Spikes
What is generally being called revenge travel had a lot to do with the increase in travelers to Los Cabos.
Tourists were itching to travel somewhere, especially international destinations, after being forced to self-isolate for the past two years in response to the pandemic,
Los Cabos is not the only Mexican destination seeing an influx of American and Canadian travelers. Other cities in Mexico, such as Puerto Vallarta and Cancun, are also seeing the same general spike in visitors.
Additionally, Americans and Canadians have flocked to European destinations this summer and the last one in response to the revenge travel trend.
For more travel hotspots, such as Los Cabos, this has resulted in rising airfares, higher hotel occupancies, costlier room rates and, of course, plenty of traffic and congestion, especially in airports.
Increased Airline Routes
Another factor driving the upward spike in the number of visitors to Los Cabos is the increase in flights secured by the Los Cabos International Airport.
Currently, there are flights to 49 destinations served by the airport. Of those, 27 of the routes are to the United States alone.
Additional countries with flights to Los Cabos include Canada with 10 and Spain with one. Domestic Mexican flights to Los Cabos account for 11 routes and increasing.
Despite room rates in Los Cabos recently hitting near an average of $600 per night, the demand still remains strong for visitors to the beach resort destination.
The Los Cabos Tourism Trust expects the number of visitors this year to Los Cabos to be 500,000 more than last year. This would be a 21 percent increase over 2021.
Prior to the start of the pandemic, Los Cabos welcomed 2.8 million tourists to the area in 2019, which was a 10 percent increase over 2018.
They also anticipate an average hotel occupancy rate of more than 70 percent for the year.
Meanwhile, the Los Cabos International Airport continues to plan ahead for future growth by considering a terminal expansion, along with a potential new terminal and runway, to come in the near future.
They are also aggressively working to secure more domestic and international flights to the airport.
The hopes are the recent rebirth of the national carrier Mexicana will add some flights domestically as well as potentially internationally as it was in the past.
They are also working to reestablish more flights to Europe, such as to the United Kingdom, which were eliminated in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Impact For Travelers
Travelers can expect services, accommodations, and available amenities to continue to grow in Los Cabos, along with the tourist traffic.
However, until the number of available airline seats and hotel rooms expands enough to meet the anticipated demand, prices will continue to increase.
Tourists should expect to pay more for their vacations to Los Cabos until the supply of services can meet the demand.
Visitors should also expect infrastructure and traffic issues to continue as well.
However, despite the impacts of the popularity of Los Cabos as a beach resort destination, it’s still a great place to spend some time enjoying the sand and surf.
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