Minister of Tourism and International Transport, Senator Lisa Cummins, speaking to the media at the Grantley Adams International Airport following the launch of the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc.’s Summer Campaign initiative. (A. Reid/BGIS)

Minister of Tourism and International Transport, Senator Lisa Cummins, has shared that the sector is creating new partnerships outside of its traditional source markets.

She was speaking recently at a press conference at the Grantley Adams International Airport (GAIA), following the launch of Giant Postcards at five popular locations across the island, as part of the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc.’s (BTMI) Summer Campaign initiative.

The Tourism Minister stated that in seeking to build new partnerships, the BTMI recently participated in the World Travel Market in Brazil and that was part of a strategic and tactical move to increase relations within the Latin American region, and also at Miami Speed Week in Florida, where they launched Barbados’ ‘Motorsport Island’ concept.

“We have anchored our partnerships with our traditional partners, such as the UK, … the US, … Canada, out of Europe, those remain our primary source markets and they will always remain our primary markets because that’s how friendships and relationships evolve; you keep your friendships long, but you also have to build new relationships….

“You’ve seen us anchoring events out of Miami for example, which may look like sports tourism, but really is about luxury tourism marketing.  We are preparing to engage even more so with Ghana, with whom we have just signed an air services agreement, and with Kenya, who we signed an air services agreement with earlier in the year, and so that means that the broader African continent is in play for us,” Minister Cummins explained.

The Tourism Minister also spoke about airlift into Barbados, noting that for the summer, Barbados should see more seats coming out of the United States market and a new carrier coming to the island in June, from a non-traditional source market, as well as two trial flights from Madrid, Spain, in July.

“And so, with our traditional partners, including our airline partners as well as new airline partners, we are looking at opening new markets, new relationships and with it, bringing new visitors to Barbados,” Senator Cummins said.

Minister Cummins pointed out that it is the goal of the ministry to diversify Barbados’ tourism product.  And in addition to creating new partnerships, it is analysing a combination of areas, such as room stock, ability to process and receive planes and cruise ships, strategic marketing in both traditional and non-traditional markets, exporting Barbadian businesses to establish a commercial presence overseas and help generate revenue, as well as using our human resource capital to spread the word about Barbados, through those Barbadians living overseas and working on cruise ships. 

It is expected that with a diversified tourism product, the industry can see an increase in visitor arrivals and the possibility of an increase in revenue for the island. 

sheena.forde-craigg@barbados.gov.bb

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