The number of tourists selecting Puerto Rico as the destination they want to visit has grown steadily this year, according to statistics from Expedia, Inc., the world’s largest online travel company, which operates more than 100 Expedia and Hotels.com-branded sites globally.
Room night bookings to the destination registered a 9 percent, increase during the first ten months of 2011, compared to the same period last year the company noted. Expedia is a key partner to hotels in Puerto Rico and around the world, providing them the ability to reach travelers in the more than 60 countries in which the travel agency has a presence.
“Working with Expedia and reaching its global audience is the key to promoting Puerto Rico as a tourist destination. Through our partnership, we are able to reach consumers in markets that otherwise would be impossible to achieve,” said Gabriel Emanuelli, director of sales and marketing for North America of the Puerto Rico Tourism Company.
The fastest growing markets for demand to Puerto Rico, as shown by bookings for the first ten months of 2011 on Expedia sites are Brazil, the United Kingdom and Canada. The United States represents the largest market for the destination, making up nearly 90 percent of room night bookings to the island.
According to data released by Expedia, the length of stay in Puerto Rico in hotel-only bookings is less than three nights. In response to this, Expedia is offering an opportunity to Puerto Rico hotels through what it calls “dynamic packaging.”
Travelers booking vacations on Expedia can book their flight and hotel together in a vacation package, which typically results in a longer advance purchase window and a longer length of stay on these bookings for the hotel. In addition, offering vacation package rates on Expedia protects the actual hotel rate because it is combined into a single price with the airfare, which also remains opaque.
“We believe that Puerto Rico has the ideal conditions to grow further as a tourist destination, which is why it represents a growing market for us in the Caribbean. It is our privilege to promote Puerto Rico as a destination to our global audience of travelers,” said Marco Tagliatti, vice president of lodging supply for Latin America and the Caribbean for Expedia.