Newsletter 20 - 16th January 2015
Hermitage Bay, Antigua Makes Condé Nast Traveler’s 2015 Gold List
Condé Nast Traveler unveiled this week the newly reinvented Gold List, which included Hermitage Bay, Antigua.  Hermitage Bay was one of only three Caribbean hotels that made the list this year.  This year, for the first time ever, the 2015 Gold List was hand selected by Condé Nast Traveler editors, writers, and network of influencers.
“It is outstanding to be recognized by an iconic and prestigious travel brand such as Condé Nast Traveler,” said Andy Thesen, owner of Hermitage Bay.  “I am most happy for my staff.  They are the backbone of Hermitage Bay and are the real recipients of this award.”
According to the magazine, a prerequisite for a Gold List property is a high standard of service, luxury, and beauty. What ultimately earned each winner a spot on the list was the unforgettable special touches that bring a hotel’s ethos to life. 
HR Breakfast Club
The HR Breakfast Club kicks off for its second quarter We on Thursday 22nd January at 9.00am at the AHTA Office on Newgate street. The chosen theme for this month is “The Bottom Line” and discussion will centre around the HR Budget, financial and non-financial matters affecting the bottom line which HR Leaders need to be concerned about.    
The cost to attend is $165.00. For more information contact Anthea in the AHTA office.
Security Managers Breakfast Meeting.
We have started regular meeting for Financial Controllers and HR Managers so we are now expanding the idea to Security Managers. The idea is to create a forum where Security Managers can network, share challenges and solutions. The meeting is open to all top level security officials which the tourism sector

The first breakfast meeting is scheduled for Tuesday January 20th at 9.00am at the AHTA Office on Newgate street. For more details contact Neil at the AHTA office.

There will be a EC$30 charge to cover breakfast.
Upcoming Trade Shows
The AHTA will be attending the Boston Globe travel Show in collaboration with the ABTA from Friday February 6th to Sunday February 8th. This show traditionally attracts well over 20.000 visitors from New England, many of which are actively looking to get away from the cold for a warmer destination. More details can be found here.
If you are interested in attending or need more information contact Neil in the AHTA Office.

In February (21st & 22nd) we will be heading to California for the Travel & Adventure Show at the Long Beach Convention Centre. This is the largest of the Travel & Adventure Shows in the US with over 32.000 visitors last year. Ladst year Antigua received over 5,000 visitors from California making it one of largest source markets in the US. For more details on the Travel & Adventure Shows click here. If you are interested in attending please let Neil know in the AHTA office

ITB from March 4th to 8th is one of the largest travel trade shows in Europe. Last year the show attracted 114,000 trade visitors. The ABTA will once again be hosting a stand with the objective of creating an awareness of Antigua and Barbuda as an accessible destination with quality product,to strengthen trade relations & to provide a platform for our tourism partners to conduct business. The cost of participation is GBP1,000 for a meeting table and two chairs. Full details can be found here as well the registration form. Registration should be returned to Cherrie Osbourne by January 26th and full payment is required by February 2nd.
Tourism Statistics

Our statistics page has been updated in the past few days with:
1) Airport Arrival statistics for December 2014

More more details click here
French & Italian classes restart the first week of February
The next 12 week term of French classes will start from February 2nd & 3rd.  
Mondays (Intermediary   5:30pm – 7:30pm)
Tuesdays  (Beginners   5:30 – 7:30pm)     
Our second term of Italian classes will start from February 5 & 6th. Beginners 1 for newcomers and Beginners 2 for returning students.
Thursdays   Beginners 1   (5:30 – 7:30pm)
Fridays   Beginners 2  (5:30 – 7:30pm)    

The classes are held at the AHTA office located on Newgate Street in the Island House Building. The cost of the course is EC$400.00
Interested persons should complete a registration form ( French - Italian) and submit to: by Friday 30th January, 2015.
LIAT announces reduction in fuel surcharge on tickets

Regional Airline LIAT on Friday announced that it is reducing the fuel surcharge on tickets. Chief Executive Officer David Evans said effective January 15, 2015 the fuel surcharge will be reduced by 50 per cent for all new bookings.
LIAT first introduced a fuel surcharge in 2003, in the wake of increasing fuel prices. In 2009 when the prices went down, the company took a decision to remove the fuel surcharge. However, in 2011, LIAT re-introduced the fuel surcharge in response to months of spiraling jet fuel prices. That year alone, LIAT spent US$22 million on fuel, or 18 per cent of total costs.
The price of both jet fuel (the fuel used by airlines), and crude oil have been falling recently.
Mr. Evans said, being fully aware of the impact rising fuel prices have had on customers, it is only fitting that they benefit from the decreased prices.
Antigua & Barbuda London Office makes its debut at Finland MATKA 2015 Show.
MATKA is the biggest travel industry event in Northern Europe and the Baltic region. It attracts both Finnish and international travel trade professionals like travel agents and tour operators as well as the general public interested in travelling. Visitors of MATKA can get information on new destinations and travel services, make reservations for a journey, update their know-how and meet with business associates and make deals or contracts.
This year show will attract close to 70,000 visitors, with 20% being trade visitors and a new Sun & Sand area was created, in which the Antigua & Barbuda’s Pavilion will be situated  . In addition to trade show, Antigua and Barbuda will co-sponsor and attend a  Destination Breakfast with Scandinavian Press, a Destination Networking Event  with Scandinavian Tour Operators and co-participate in a Caribbean Happy Hour for the general public.
This has provided Antigua and Barbuda with  a great opportunity to meet and network with the Finnish market and key tourism professionals from the neighbouring countries as it continues to grow its European Market- the second largest for Antigua & Barbuda.

New Destination Video
The above promotional video is currently airing on all British airways long haul flights. Click the image to view the video.
Mike Holmes, Canadian Home Improvement television show host, stopped by the East Caribbean Village for a taste of Antigua and Barbuda at the Toronto Boat Show last weekend. Seen here with Tameka Wharton from the ABTA Toronto office.
Bangor couple inspired by visit to school near resort in Antigua to return with basic essentials for the children
Jeff and Aleshia Figgins of Bangor visited Villa Primary School during a 2014 vacation to the Sandals resort in Antigua.
Children so poor they don’t wear underwear to school isn’t exactly the image that comes to mind when one thinks of the Sandals resort in Antigua. But that’s exactly what a Bangor couple found during their vacation last year, when they signed up to leave the all-inclusive hotel for a day and read books to children at a local primary school.
Read full story here
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Island House. Newgate Street
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St John's
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