Hong Kong’s marine theme park, Ocean Park, has recorded a deficit of 241.1 million Hong Kong dollars (214.6 million yuan) and announced a ticket price hike effective next year.
The deficit, announced on December 7, was the largest since 1987, as the visitor flow dropped to 6 million, down almost 19 percent for the year. The park said the drop is a result of the reduction of tourists from Mainland China, which ordinarily accounts for 40 percent of the park’s attendees.
The number of Mainland Chinese tourists arriving in Hong Kong is about 35 million for the first three quarters of 2016, down 8 percent, according to the Hong Kong Tourism Board. However, during the same period, Mainland China’s overall number of outbound travelers reached a three-quarter peak of 101 million, according to the Germany-based independent researcher, China Outbound Tourism Research Institute, slightly over a 3 percent annual increase.
Facing the deficit the park will increase daytime admission tickets for adults and children (aged 3-11) to HKD8 and HKD9 from 390 and 195 yuan, respectively, as of January 1, with a grace period for local residents until the end of February. The new price remains the lowest among the park’s competitors in the region. Hong Kong Disneyland charged HKD9 (480 yuan) for an adult ticket. Zhuhai’s Chimelong Ocean Kingdom charges 350 yuan, according to the attractions’ websites.
To boost attendance, the park will launch a water park in 2018 to offer all-weather and night attractions, along with two new five-star hotels, to be opened in 2018 and 2020.