Jamaica Celebrates The Return of Canadian Tourism Market

KINGSTON, JAMAICA – July 6, 2021 – Jamaican government and tourist industry officials were on hand at Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay on Sunday, July 4 to welcome back Canadian visitors and celebrate the arrival of Air Canada’s first Dreamliner flight into the destination. As the inaugural Jamaican flight for Air Canada’s signature 787 Boeing aircraft, the momentous occasion represents the exciting return of the Canadian tourism market following a six-month hiatus.

Two hundred passengers and crew members on flight AC 982 from Toronto were greeted with a water salute on the tarmac and a lively reception upon arrival in the terminal. Travellers received a warm island welcome and met with official representatives Nadine Spence, Area Chair of the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association, Councillor Richard Vernon, Deputy Mayor of Montego Bay, and Odette Dyer, Regional Director, Jamaica Tourist Board.

“Canada is the second largest source market for Jamaica and the return of Canadian tourism in Jamaica is welcome news for our country’s hotel partners, attractions, transportation providers, hospitality workers, and the thousands of individuals employed in our tourism related industries,” said Hon. Edmund Bartlett, Jamaica’s Minister of Tourism. “I am pleased to welcome the return of Air Canada to Jamaica after the six-month hiatus from January this year.”

Air Canada and WestJet are the first Canadian airlines to resume service to Montego Bay this July after months of flight restrictions in the first half of 2021. More than 280,000 air seats have been secured from Canada to Jamaica so far this winter as travel bookings surge following the relaxation of Canada’s international travel restrictions and quarantine protocols. The increased airlift from Canadian airline partners signifies an important step in the return of international travel and is a critical step in the recovery of Jamaica’s tourism sector.

“Air Canada is very pleased to resume our passenger service to Jamaica, which we have proudly served for more than 70 years,” said Luis Noriega Benet, General Manager, Latin America and the Caribbean, Air Canada. “There is no doubt many Canadians are looking to travel to Jamaica for a long-postponed sun holiday. As well, there are many people both in Jamaica and Canada who are eager to visit with friends and family members they have not been able to see since the pandemic began. We look forward to welcoming everyone on board and celebrating together the rebirth of travel.”

For more information about Jamaica, go to www.visitjamaica.com.

Posted in: 2021 News, Blog, Destination News

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Edelweiss Air Makes Inaugural Trip to Destination Jamaica

Montego Bay, Jamaica – July 7, 2021 – On 5 July, Jamaica welcomed for the first time, Swiss airline, Edelweiss Air. The airline will offer weekly summer service to the Sangster International Airport, Montego Bay (MBJ) from Zurich, Switzerland until October.

“Edelweiss Air flying directly from Zurich to Montego Bay primarily caters to the Swiss traveller and opens many opportunities for the luxury market. Statistics consistently show the Swiss as having the highest average wage in the world,” said Donovan White, Director of Tourism. “Further, with Edelweiss being part of Swiss International Airlines which has a very strong appeal to luxury travellers, this service  offers the opportunity to attract more discerning European and Asian travellers utilizing the Swiss  air network.”

Of the 108 passengers and crew there was a diverse mix of diehard Jamaican fans including Swiss nationals, Danes and Jamaicans returning home. The once weekly flight will arrive on Mondays before making the return leg that same evening.

For more information about Jamaica, go to www.visitjamaica.com.

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Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Bounces Back

(ANTIGUA & BARBUDA) – A steady increase in tourism arrivals from the United States and a surge in bookings from the United Kingdom, is signaling that the bounce back of the Antigua and Barbuda tourism sector has begun in earnest.

“This is good news for the country’s economy, as our main source markets re-open to international travel and we see our airlift and hotel occupancy levels increase. ” said Antigua and Barbuda’s Tourism Minister, the Honourable Charles ‘Max’ Fernandez.

He further indicated  “Antigua and Barbuda is open, and we are delighted that consumers can have confidence in traveling to our shores. We have worked steadfastly to ensure the safety of our people and our visitors, and we are pleased and proud that this resulted in a lower number of COVID cases and by extension, reduced the negative impact on our economy.”

“We will continue to do everything we can to maintain a safe environment as the number of arrivals increase and our economy rebounds” said Minister Fernandez.

Total arrivals for June 2021 were at 14,503, compared to 22,429 in June 2019. All indications are that the deficit is closing rapidly each month and is now showing a -35% deficit on our best year.  The true success story however is with arrivals from the US market. The month of June 2021 saw 12,205 US visitors a +9.8% increase over the total for June 2019 of 11,115. This was until now our best June ever for USA arrivals to Antigua and Barbuda. The hard work of the tourism teams in the overseas markets to remain engaged and active during and after the pandemic has now begun to bear fruit,” said James.

The Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority CEO Colin C. James also noted that with Antigua and Barbuda now also on the UK’s Green Travel List, arrivals will also begin to rise from that source market. Arrivals from the UK market for June 2021, stood at 1,383.

Private jet services to Antigua with 1,219 flights, carrying a noticeable number of first-time visitors have also been recorded between January and June 2021. This represents an +18.6% increase of private air travel to the country over the same period in 2019.

The growth in tourism arrivals come as welcomed news to hospitality sector workers.  With some resorts nearing 100% occupancy and more visitors expected to travel to the country this Summer, industry workers are returning to work. The Antigua and Barbuda Hotels and Tourism Association reports that approximately 3,900 hotel staff are back to work and with average occupancy for July now projected at 71% versus an earlier reported 38%, resorts have begun to hire additional staff.  Prior to the pandemic, the number of hotel workers stood at approximately 5,600.

Over 36,000 persons resident in Antigua and Barbuda have been vaccinated which is a strong positive safety indicator for consumers as they begin to make decisions on where to vacation.

In the wake of the pandemic, Antigua and Barbuda Tourism officials and stakeholders proactively shared the destination’s ‘sun, sea and safe’ message, that encouraged adherence to covid-19 protocols and supported the Government’s vaccination programme.

The Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority’s ongoing ‘Your Space In Sun’ marketing campaign, also addresses concerns of potential travelers on social distancing, while assuring industry partners and consumers that Antigua and Barbuda is safe and ready to receive visitors when they are ready to travel.

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Sky High Aviation Resumes Scheduled Service Between Anguilla and the Dominican Republic

The Valley, Anguilla, July 8, 2021: The Anguilla Tourist Board is pleased to announce that Sky High Aviation Services has restored its scheduled weekly service between the Dominican Republican and Anguilla as of July 1st, 2021.  The weekly service operates every Thursday between Santo Domingo’s Las Américas International Airport (SDQ) and Anguilla’s Clayton J. Lloyd International Airport (AXA).  The Anguilla flights may be booked directly on Sky High Aviation’s website.

“Our focus is on expanding access to Anguilla through our regional airline partners, so we are very pleased that Sky High Aviation is once again operating their Embraer 145LR jet service between Anguilla and Santo Domingo,” stated the Hon. Minister of Tourism for Anguilla, Mr. Haydn Hughes. “As plans for our airport expansion progress, and we are able to accommodate larger aircraft, we will be working with our partners to attract flights from additional gateways within the region and beyond.” 

The weekly, scheduled service will operate as follows:

Santo Domingo (SDQ) – Anguilla (AXA) Anguilla (AXA) – Santo Domingo (SDQ)
Depart Arrive Depart Arrive
14:00 15:00 15:50 16:50

 

 “We are delighted to resume our operations between Santo Domingo and Anguilla,” stated Victor Nina, Commercial Manager, Sky High Aviation. “There is considerable demand for this service, as it is one of our most popular routes.  Our customers have missed the convenience as well as the business and leisure opportunities afforded by these flights.”

“Sky High Aviation’s weekly scheduled service from Santo Domingo to Anguilla opens up significant opportunities to attract new visitors to our island,” declared Stacey Liburd, Director of Tourism for Anguilla. “The Dominican Republic is one of the region’s most successful tourism destinations, and we can now tap into their substantial visitor base for twin destination marketing, creating an attractive and innovative product that we can offer to our travel advisors and industry partners for their clients.”

For further information, reservations and to purchase flights customers can visit Sky High Aviation’s website at www.skyhighdominicana.com;  or call their Reservations Department at +809-591-4412; or book their tickets through a wide range of travel agencies.

For information on Anguilla please visit the official website of the Anguilla Tourist Board: www.IvisitAnguilla.com; follow us on Facebook: Facebook.com/AnguillaOfficial; Instagram: @Anguilla_Tourism; Twitter: @Anguilla_Trsm, Hashtag: #MyAnguilla.

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Anguilla Updates Entry Protocols For Fully Vaccinated Travelers

The Valley, Anguilla, July 7, 2021:   As previously announced, effective Thursday, July 1st, only fully vaccinated adult travelers are allowed entry to Anguilla; children under the age of 18 years and women who are pregnant are exempt from this requirement.  A fully vaccinated traveler is described as one who has received the last dose of vaccine in a two dose or one dose vaccine protocol, at least three (3) weeks or twenty-one (21) days prior to arrival on island.

The following four vaccines are approved for entry by Anguilla’s Health Authorities:

Vaccine Manufacturers/Developers Trade Names and Aliases Dose Schedule
Pfizer/BioNTech Cormintary; BNT162b2 2
Oxford/AstraZeneca Astrazeneca, Vaxzevria, Covishield, AZ; AZD1222 (ChAdOx1) 2
Moderna Moderna; Spikevax 2
Janssen Janssen/Johnson and Johnson; JnJ 1

 

International travelers must apply for Entry Permission at www.ivisitanguilla.com and must submit a negative COVID-19 rt-PCR test from a nasopharyngeal swab taken 3 – 5 days prior to arrival on island. Proof of vaccination must be uploaded to the entry application – the legally issued card/identification by the country administering the vaccine will be reviewed by the Anguillian authorities to ensure authenticity.

Applications will not be accepted later than 12:00 PM EST the day before the day of arrival. For assistance with the travel application portal visitors may email [email protected] (please allow up to 12 hours for a reply); or call 1-264-584-2710, or 1-264-497-5666 between the hours of 8:00 AM and 7:00 PM EST.

All visitors will be tested on arrival; however, there are no fees charged. Visitors are required to stay in place at their hotel or villa while awaiting their test results, which are usually delivered within 12 hours.

All restrictions on fully vaccinated guests’ movements have been lifted, which means that upon receipt of their negative test result, guests are free to roam around the island at will.  They can rent a vehicle, explore the island’s 33 spectacular beaches, dine around at the fabulous assortment of restaurants and beach bars, enjoy a relaxing and luxurious spa treatment, take to the links or the off-shore cays, and experience all that this extraordinary island has to offer.

Guests are asked to adhere to and respect the COVID-19 protocols of business and establishments on island, which may include wearing a face covering at places where social distancing cannot be maintained, and observing proper hygiene with frequent hand washing or using hand sanitizer.

For more detailed information on Anguilla’s travel protocols please visit the official website of the Anguilla Tourist Board: www.IvisitAnguilla.com/escape; follow us on Facebook: Facebook.com/AnguillaOfficial; Instagram: @Anguilla_Tourism; Twitter: @Anguilla_Trsm, Hashtag: #MyAnguilla.

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