KINGSTON, Jamaica – Minister of Tourism, Edmund Bartlett, who is currently in Canada to discuss strategies with the country’s leading stakeholders, to address the decline from that market, says that the meetings have been informative and are expected to yield positive results in the near future.
“In my first term as minister we grew the Canadian market by over 100 percent. Upon returning in March of this year, I became acutely aware that the Canadian market suffered a decline of 6.8 percent last year and there were further declines this year. So these meetings in Canada are a crucial part of our renewed action plan to end the decline and put us firmly on a growth path,” explained Minister Bartlett.
The Minister is meeting with representatives from various entities such as: Air Canada Vacations, Westjet Vacations, Sunwing Vacations, and Travelbrands. He will also host a reception dinner with tour operators, top retail travel agents, representatives of Jamaican hotels and the travel trade media.
“I am very pleased with the progress we have been making during this visit to Canada. The stakeholders we have met with seem very eager to play their part to ensure that we see the spike in arrivals we desire from the Canadian market. We will use all that we have gathered from our meetings to strategically re-launch Jamaica’s advertising and marketing campaign,” said Minister Bartlett.
When combined, visitor arrivals from the U.S. and Canadian markets are a little over 1.7 million and according to Minister Bartlett, the current target is to attract in excess of two million.
“I have mandated the Jamaica Tourist Board to revamp their marketing efforts, in this regard, to ensure that we achieve our growth targets. I am happy to report that we have already seen results of this in international travel surveys. Travel Leaders Group released findings from its most recent nationwide survey of travel agents and Montego Bay ranked number 9 among international destinations,” he said.
The Minister and his delegation, which includes Chairman of the Jamaica Tourist Board John Lynch; Director of Tourism Paul Pennicook; and Deputy Director of Tourism – Marketing Marcia McLaughlin, are scheduled to return to the island on September 1, 2016.