The Dutch Caribbean island of Aruba has witnessed an 8.7% year-on-year increase in the first half of 2010. Establishing itself as one of the top 10 destinations in the Caribbean for the British market, Aruba recorded a total of 5,921 arrivals from the UK between January and June, compared with 5,445 for the same period the previous year. More than 30 UK tour operators now feature the island, including Kuoni, Thomas Cook Signature, Hayes & Jarvis and lastminute.com. “Our ArOOOHuba! campaign has proved extremely popular and, in combination with Thomson Airways’ increased frequency, has helped us boost visitor numbers,” said Aruba Tourism Authority UK Director Joanna Walding. “We remain one of the fastest growing destinations in the Caribbean and preliminary bookings stand us in good stead for the second half of the year.”The news follows a record 2009, where UK visitors to Aruba went up 28.3 per cent. It was the first time that ex-UK visitors surpassed 10,000 in a single year, making the UK second only to The Netherlands in generating visitors to the island among Aruba’s European markets.Aruba is benefiting from an increased frequency in Thomson’s charter flights to the island (operating now weekly from London Gatwick and Manchester) and a high-profile advertising campaign in London and Manchester earlier this year, for which it won a Travel Marketing Award in the “Best Poster Advertising” category.