Local tourism to benefit from Caribbean travel marketplace

written by BVC November 2, 2022

Discussions between the Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association (BHTA),  airlines and other tourism interests at the recent Caribbean Travel Marketplace (CTM) are likely to result in benefits for the industry here in the upcoming winter season and beyond, a senior BHTA official has disclosed.

Although keeping the details close to his chest, the association’s chief executive officer Geoffrey Roach told Barbados TODAY that this year’s Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA)-organized CTM was productive, and the aim now is to follow through on the preliminary talks held during the 40th edition of the Caribbean’s largest and longest-running marketing event.

“I wouldn’t want to go into detail because some of [the people we had talks with] have asked us not to share too much at this point, but I would say that for the industry there are promising discussions with airlines, with persons who are looking for accommodation, persons who want to bring groups to the island,” he told Barbados TODAY in Puerto Rico last week as the first face-to-face CTM since the onset of COVID-19 was winding down.

“The discussions have yielded some promising potential for the country and really, at the end of the day, what comes of it will be based on what we do after . . . .

“We have to . . . sit and strategize around some of the discussions that we’ve had.

Meetings are one thing but it’s about the plans that we make coming out of the discussions that we had,” Roach added.

The BHTA’s participation in this year’s CTM – which allowed tourism suppliers to meet face-to-face with wholesalers from around the world selling Caribbean vacation travel – marked the resumption of the association’s in-person marketing thrust to the international market.

Chairman Renée Coppin noted that although participation at the two-day event may not have been as high as before COVID-19, it was still tremendously successful with over 800 delegates represented.

“We had a very busy schedule with a number of productive meetings looking at how we can build business for Barbados for the upcoming winter season as well as 2023 into 2024,” Coppin said.

“Another major focus for us was working on maintaining the strong relationships for which Barbados has always been known with our trade partners, as this has been extremely important to our success as a destination over the years.”

More than 20 BHTA member companies along with representatives from the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. (BTMI) and Intimate Hotels of Barbados (IHB) attended the event which attracted tourism suppliers, traditional and new buyers and travel advisors from around the world. (DP)


Photo: (Left to right) BHTA chairman Renée Coppin speaking with BHTA CEO Geoffrey Roach, BTMI Director, USA, Eusi Skeete, and Loreto Duffy-Mayers (backing) at the recent CHTA Caribbean Travel Marketplace in Puerto Rico.

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