A banner year for tourism in Montreal as tourists spent $4B in 2017

The Jacques Cartier Bridge is lit up to celebrate Montreal's 375th birthday on Wednesday, May 17, 2017. Dan Spector / Global News

Montreal saw an increase in tourism in 2017 based on Tourism Montreal‘s latest annual report.

Over 11.1 million tourists visited Montreal in 2017, a 5.1 per cent increase from 2016.

Tourists spent 9.7 per cent more compared to last year, spending more than $4 billion on business and leisure in the city.

Tourism Montreal states that Montreal was listed as one of the most popular tourist destinations in Canada last year.

READ MORE: Quebec sees boom in tourists

The city saw an increase of over 11 per cent in international tourism in 2017.

According to the Conference Board of Canada, the number of visitors from France increased by per cent. A surge of 33 per cent in visitors from China pushed the Chinese ahead of tourists visiting from the United Kingdom. The number of tourists from Mexico rose by about 50 per cent.

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As well, there was an 11.9 per cent surge in flights from the United States.

Over 18.2 million people flew through Montreal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau Airport, which represented an increase of 9.5 per cent total passengers since 2016 and a growth of 13.5 per cent in international passenger volumes for 2017.

According to the Hotel Association of Greater Montreal, hotel occupancy averaged about 76.5 per cent with a median daily rate of $184.31. Between June and August, the average daily hotel room rate was $214.10, which represented an increase of 11.7 per cent since 2016.

Tourism Montreal’s report also showed growth in terms of business tourism. Along with its staple events, the city also hosted the Destinations International conference and the FIG Artistic Gymnastics World Championships in 2017.

The report says there were over 380,000 nights booked in commercial accommodation last year, a 15 per cent increase from 2016.

Festivities marking Montreal’s 375th anniversary helped bump up attendance at the city’s main tourist attractions by six per cent.

READ MORE: Montreal celebrating its 375th birthday today

Projects such as Cité Memoire, the illumination of the Jacques-Cartier Bridge, the opening of the ferris wheel in the Old Port, La Grande Roue, new pavilions at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts and Pointe-à-Callière have generated new interest in the city’s attractions and helped lift tourism numbers in 2017.

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“In addition to being a historic year, 2017 was a springboard for Montreal’s international recognition,” said Yves Lalumière, CEO of Tourism Montreal.

The city is more alive and more dynamic than ever. Tourism has been one of the most buoyant sectors of the Montréal economy.

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