CTO News

Archive for Caribbean Tourism Month

DOTCT Celebrates Caribbean Tourism Month with Week of Activities

SCARBOROUGH Tobago, Monday 13th November 2017: The Division of Tourism, Culture and Transportation (DOTCT) joins the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) and the region in celebrating Caribbean Tourism Month 2017 by hosting a series of activities from November 19th – 26th, 2017.

Recognized annually under the theme One Sea, One Voice, One Caribbean, Caribbean Tourism Month serves as an avenue through which Caribbean destinations are able to come together and collectively remind the world that the region is open for business.

On behalf of Destination Tobago, the Division will take this opportunity to increase awareness of the benefits of Tobago’s tourism industry to the island’s economy; develop a sense of pride and ownership of Tobago’s tourism product among the island’s residents; encourage greater collaboration between the public and private sector; as well as build morale and foster a spirit of camaraderie amongst Division staff.

The following is the schedule of activities for Caribbean Tourism Month

SUNDAY 19TH NOVEMBER, 2017

Opening of Interactive Museum – Fort King George Heritage Park, 3pm & 5 pm

The theatrical re-enactments at Fort King George will commence from Sunday 19th November, with free tours taking place at 3 pm and 5 pm. There will also be a storytelling session at 2 pm. The Interactive Museum will be open to the public on days cruise ships call on the island, at 10:30 am and 2 pm, as well as on Sundays at 3 pm. Tours will cost $20 (adults) and $10 (children). 

MONDAY 20TH NOVEMBER, 2017

Youth Tourism Symposium for Secondary Schools – Shaw Park Cultural Complex, 9am-2pm

The “Youth Tourism Symposium” is the first of its kind in Tobago and targets Forms 4-6 students enrolled in Secondary Schools throughout the island.  The theme of the symposium is Promoting Youth Leadership in Tourism. The objective is to engender within the island’s youth an appreciating for, and understanding of, the tourism industry; educate students on the significance of the sector; and stimulate interest in the industry as a viable career choice. Speakers include:

Mr. Travis Robinson, Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Tourism and Aviation, Government of The Bahamas

Ms. Le-An Telesford, Junior Minister of Tourism, Trinidad and Tobago

Mr. Dwayne Lyons, Tobago Entrepreneur, Xclusive Ideologies

TUESDAY 21ST NOVEMBER, 2017

Thanksgiving Service – DOTCT Head Office, 12 Sangster’s Hill, 9am

The Thanksgiving Service is a non-denominational open air service, hosted to celebrate the hard work of all staff within the Division and nurture a spirit of togetherness among staff.

Primary School Community Awareness Quiz Finals and Prize Giving Ceremony – Lowlands Multipurpose Centre, 9am – 1pm

The Primary School Community Awareness quiz seeks to educate and sensitize Tobago’s Primary School students about the importance of tourism to the island’s economy, and impress upon them the significant role they can play in the development of the industry. With twelve (12) primary schools participating, the quiz runs from 15th – 20th November.

THURSDAY 23RD NOVEMBER, 2017

Stakeholders Cocktail Reception – Pigeon Point Heritage Pavilion, 7pm-10pm

The Stakeholder Reception seeks to bring together industry stakeholders involved in both the public and private sector. The event is designed to facilitate networking, as well as constructive dialogue with the aim of improving the synergies among all parties involved in Tobago’s tourism industry.

SATURDAY 26TH NOVEMBER, 2017

Tobago Great Tourism Adventure – Island wide, 9am

The Tobago Great Tourism Adventure puts a cultural twist on the traditional treasure hunt. Participants will embark upon an exciting trek across the island, on a quest to solve riddles and execute tasks that will educate them on the island’s rich culture and heritage. Historical landmarks, iconic attractions and age-old traditions will all be featured in this one-of-a-kind experience.

Tourism Week Social Media Campaign

Stay tuned to the Division of Tourism, Culture and Transportation – Tobago House of Assembly Facebook page for the launch of the My Tourism Story video series, the Spot the Sites contest, and more.

Posted in: 2017 News, Blog, Caribbean Tourism Month, Destination News

Leave a Comment (0) →

Message From Minister for Tourism, Civil Aviation and Culture Dr. Clarice Modeste Curwen in Observance of Tourism Awareness Month

The recent devastation caused by Hurricanes Irma and Maria are stark reminders of the ever changing environment we live in. Climate change is evident as storms become stronger and more frequent, with experts saying this phenomenon is a direct result of human activity. Our brothers and sisters in the Northern Caribbean have begun the arduous task of rebuilding and indeed Pure Grenada remembers this all too well when we dealt with a similar task in 2004 after Hurricane Ivan.

The Tourism industry is crucial to our economies, providing millions of dollars in revenue and a significant number of jobs. However, we have seen how vulnerable this industry is. Therefore, the challenge for this generation is to make smart choices to protect and preserve the natural assets that make this country such a great destination; our environment.

Grenada has long been lauded for its natural beauty and lush vegetation; from our rolling hills to our gorgeous waterfalls and pristine beaches. However, this natural beauty and Grenada’s purity is under threat by the littering of our beautiful nation. We all need to ensure that Grenada’s natural beauty is sustained for future generations. Let our human activity enhance our natural environment, rather than destroy it.

For this year’s observance of Tourism Awareness month in Pure Grenada, we have chosen the theme, “Sustainable Tourism: Our path to a Pure Grenada”. This theme reminds us that through Tourism we can advocate and contribute to actions that support the sustainable development of Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique. Activities for this month include the launch of a Tourism Awareness Campaign on November 15, the launch of an Underwater Sculpture Park Design Competition, the launch of a Tourism Booklet for primary schools and engagement of the general public through the media.

The Tourism Awareness Campaign will be a three-pronged programme, aimed at bringing sustainable development issues to the forefront. This campaign will focus on careers in tourism, discovering Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique and preserving our natural environment. As the programme is rolled out we look forward to you joining us on the path to creating and maintaining a truly ‘Pure Grenada’.

Posted in: 2017 News, Blog, Caribbean Tourism Month

Leave a Comment (0) →

CTO Sec. Gen. Message on the observance of Caribbean Tourism Month November, 2017

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, 1 Nov 2017.  This year can be described as a tale of two situations for Caribbean tourism. During the first half of this year the region performed at new record pace, welcoming 16.6 million international tourist arrivals at a healthy growth rate of 5.2 per cent, when compared to the same period last year.

However, hurricanes Irma and Maria have dented this growth, with the revised forecast for 2017 now at one to two per cent, down from 2.5 to 3.5 per cent.

The economic impact of the storms is significant. The Caribbean Development Bank predicts that every one per cent reduction in tourist arrivals (based on 2015 travel data) will cost US$137 million in lost revenue.

No doubt, the hurricanes have presented us with some major challenges, but we are determined to rebuild better and more sustainably.

In the meantime, while the affected countries are at various stages on the road back to normality, it is also important to note that over 75 per cent of the region was unscathed by the storms. In this context, we encourage you to keep visiting the Caribbean, as this is the best way to help the region.

During Caribbean Tourism Month we will focus on adventure, in keeping with the Year of Adventure. Mindful of the impact of the storms, there are still countless travel adventures to be had this month and for the remainder of the year.

We look forward to hearing of the various events and activities planned for the month, and with your permission, we will share your information and images. .

The month also provides an opportunity to reiterate the message that we are open for business and we do have an exciting product to offer.

Yes, some challenges remain and those are being addressed, but let’s also emphasize the  superb experiences we can offer to guests right now and help them and their companions have a Caribbean adventure to remember.

Together, let’s keep the right focus on this important industry and reaffirm the value of One Sea, One Voice, One Caribbean.

Posted in: 2017 News, Blog, Caribbean Tourism Month, Corporate News

Leave a Comment (0) →

Message by Belize Minister of Tourism & Culture for Caribbean Tourism Month 2016

Belize offers a unique destination to our visitors as it is located within the Caribbean and Central America regions, allowing convenient multi-destinations travel within one of the most popular tourist basins in the world. Belize features a rich and diverse mix of culture and cheerful citizens. The astounding Barrier Reef is the second largest in the world. We feature safe waters for diving, snorkeling, swimming, boating, fishing, numerous rivers for rafting and kayaking. An abundance of Mayan Temples, caves and islands, pristine rainforests for hiking and bird-watching, all contribute to the attractions which drive our thriving tourism industry.

Belize has progressed significantly in its tourism growth despite the challenges of diseases such as Zika, severe weather events such as Hurricane Earl and the recent “de-risking” banking movement that impacted the Caribbean. 2015 saw a tremendous growth of 6.2% with a significant increase in our overnight arrivals. This trend continues as the January through September 2016 statistics reflect a 16% growth in this key performance indicator. Cruise has also seen a 1.3% growth at September 2016 for the first nine months of the year. The launch of new direct flights to Belize from major travel hubs for both North American and South American markets, and increased connectivity from Europe and within the Central American region, have also contributed to this boost.

We have also seen growth in occupancy as our stakeholders improve and expand on their accommodations and amenities while ensuring that sustainable practices are being adhered to.  Infrastructural development of our roads, improvements at our domestic airports and at border facilities and tourism sites all around the country are also contributing to the enhancement of our tourism brand and equity.

Belize is enthusiastic about the future of tourism both at a national and regional level. Our efforts to penetrate new markets by strategic marketing investments include aggressively embracing digital marketing concepts. We believe that it is vital for stakeholders, statutory bodies and relevant government agencies both at the national and regional level to collaborate to ensure the vibrancy, sustainability and continuous evolvement of our collective Caribbean paradise destinations.

Caribbean Tourism Month provides another ideal opportunity for us as Belizeans to become tourists for a while in our own country and enjoy all of these wonderful attributes that we offer the rest of the world. It also is a good time to reaffirm our commitment to work towards excellence in the quality of our service, the quality of our product, and the tourism sector on a whole.

Happy Caribbean Tourism Month.

Posted in: 2016 News, Blog, Caribbean Tourism Month, Destination News

Leave a Comment (0) →

Caribbean Tourism Month 2016 Message by CTO Secretary General, Mr. Hugh Riley

THEME: ONE SEA, ONE VOICE, ONE CARIBBEAN

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, 1 Nov 2016.  During 2015 our region has set arrival and visitor expenditure records that have surpassed expectations. Caribbean tourism grew by an estimated seven per cent to 28.7 million visits, much higher than the projected four to five per cent. This performance was above the global rate of growth, which the UN agency, the World Tourism Organization quotes at 4.4 per cent.

In that period, visitors spent over a billion dollars more than they did in 2014, contributing approximately US$30 billion to Caribbean economies.  For 2016 the latest visitor arrival data indicate that tourist trips grew by 5.2% in the first six months when compared to the same period of 2015. While this is encouraging, we must not settle. We certainly cannot relax until we become the world’s most desirable year round, warm weather destination and until every citizen of the Caribbean benefits from tourism.

The first priority is to embrace our mantra of sustainable tourism development. We must keep the right balance between maximizing the benefits of our tourism assets for the wellbeing of our current populations, and do so responsibly, so that we can preserve those resources for generations to come.  To maximize the benefit and preserve resources, we need to create systems that ensure that guests and hosts can equally enjoy the experience.

The economic benefits of the tourism industry are enormous. In the Caribbean, where we have a clear understanding of tourism’s contribution to financial prosperity, we are seeing more of our citizens becoming involved in ‘the sharing economy’. We are opening our homes and apartments to visitors from around the world. Ordinary citizens have become hosts. But while I have often described the essence of hospitality as “sharing space and breaking bread” our populations must also pay attention to “guestpitality”, a laser-like focus on the guest’s point of view. Indeed if hospitality is about customer service, then guestpitality must surely be about customer experience.

During Caribbean Tourism Month, which we observe every November, we will have the opportunity to place even greater emphasis on the kinds of experiences we offer to guests, which make up our exciting and diversified tourism product.

It’s also a great time to introduce new ideas, methods and products, to propose innovative and revolutionary thinking and to generate fresh energy into the sector. Throughout November, the CTO will undertake several social media activities during which member countries will be profiled on the organization’s social media platforms. These include:

  • 30 Day Social Media Photo/Video Challenge featuring the people, fashion, heritage and natural attributes of the Caribbean
  • Help Me Pick a Caribbean Holiday/Vacation Spot Social Media Poll
  • Online Caribbean Fashion Show via Periscope & Facebook Live Marathon/Tweet-Chat
  • Romantic Facts about CTO member countries

This is an excellent opportunity to be featured globally and to demonstrate to the world that the spirit of togetherness we talk so passionately about remains alive and vibrant in the Caribbean. It also helps to give meaning to the Caribbean Tourism Month theme, One Sea, One Voice, One Caribbean.

We wish to encourage every CTO member country, every tourism entity and everyone engaged either directly or indirectly in tourism to join us by participating in these initiatives and by organizing at least one activity during the month that will help focus attention on the industry. Be creative, be daring, be brave, be innovative.

We’ll take this opportunity to thank the sponsors, supporters and everyone who helps us celebrate Caribbean Tourism Month.

Together, let’s keep the right focus on this important industry and reaffirm the value of One Sea, One Voice, One Caribbean.

Posted in: 2016 News, Blog, Caribbean Tourism Month

Leave a Comment (0) →