Jamaica Sees Record Tourism In 2024 Despite Negative Travel Advisories

In the first two months of 2024, Jamaica’s tourism and foreign exchange earnings have continued to grow, building on a record 2023. The Caribbean country has seen over one million visitors and $1 billion in gross foreign exchange earnings in January and February of 2024. 

Edmund Bartlett, Jamaica’s Minister of Tourism, announced the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) as the country is building on a record year that saw over four million visitors in 2023. 

In terms of the stats to show growth, some that were shared included:

  • Arrivals for January-February were 1,000,961, up 15.1 percent over the same months in 2023
  • 611,642 stopover arrivals, up 7.4 percent over the same months in 2024
  • 389,319 cruise passenger arrivals, up 29.7 percent over the same months in 2024
  • Arrivals brought in $1 billion, up 8.5 percent over the same months in 2024

This comes despite the fact that on January 23, 2024, The U.S. State Department deemed Jamaica a Level 3: Reconsider Travel, due to crime and medical services. 

The summary of the advisory reads “Violent crimes, such as home invasions, armed robberies, sexual assaults, and homicides, are common. Sexual assaults occur frequently, including at all-inclusive resorts”, but that hasn’t seemed to stop visitors from traveling to Jamaica.

The Jamaican government and Jamaica’s ambassador to the U.S. have both since come out to speak against the travel advisory. Both commented that there was exaggerated language used that is damaging to the tourism industry in the Caribbean country and that the advisory should be revoked. 

Another boost to the tourism industry in Jamaica is the fact that it will host the 42nd edition of the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association’s (CHTA) Caribbean Travel Marketplace, May 20-22, 2024. The trade show gathers the industry’s suppliers and buyers along with hotels, resorts and attractions to share their upcoming news.