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Newsletter 12 - 17th October 2014
 
Tropical Storm Gonzarlo dominated the news this week. Most hotels were able to put their preparedness plans in place at short notice and limit the damages. In most cases damage was mostly slight but landscaping took a large hit across the islands with most properties loosing trees and foliage. To date we only have reports of one property closing due to the storm and that is Hawksbill which is closed until further notice. On the attractions front we are hearing that D-Boat is also closed until further notice.
We wish all our members well and a speedy recovery.
AHTA News
Antigua and Barbuda Exhibits at TTG Rimini


 
Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority along with representatives from Bluewaters, Cocos, The Inn at English Harbour and Sugar Ridge  participated at a hugely successful  TTG Rimini  from 9 to 11 October.
 
Antigua and Barbuda’s presence was well received amongst the trade, as the destination   remains within the  top five  most popular Caribbean holiday destinations for the Italian market. Cuba, Dominican Republic, Jamaica and Aruba being the top 4.   Over the course of the three day show, ABTA conducted  meetings with established and new tour operators, as well as scores of travel agents to gain an insight into Antigua and Barbuda’s performance and discuss marketing initiatives for 2015.
 
In conjunction with the CTO Italy chapter, Antigua and Barbuda participated in an on stand  facebook ‘selfie’ competition  targeting bloggers where entrants had the opportunity to win a bottle of English Harbour rum.  Milena Marchioni from Bimbi e Viaggi a blog geared towards the family market was one of the recipients of a prize.
 
TTG Rimini 2014 attracted over 60,000 trade visitors. 
American Airlines Caribbean Employee Resource Group makes donations to local Charities

Three worthy charities in Antigua and Barbuda were the recipients of much needed supplies on October 8th, when they received a visit from the employees and guests of the American Airlines Caribbean Employee Resource Group.

Every year the employees select a different island to be the recipient of their "adopt-an-island" project.  This year, the group decided on Antigua, and specifically thought it necessary to visit: The Victory Center, The Fiennes Institute and the Care Project of Antigua.

The group of eight, were led by their Diversity Advisory Council representative and Vice president of the group Varita Shelton.  Included in the group was President Elizabeth Cline and diversity advisory council vice chairperson Yvonne Williams-Walton.
Read more...

Training
French classes started last week and are now under way on Monday Tuesday and Wednesday evenings. Italian classes started yesterday evening (Thursday)  but it is not too late to sign up, space is still available for the Friday evening class which numbers permitting will start tonight but persons can still join next week.

We are planning a Certified Pool Operators Course in partnership with Caribbean Water Treatment. This will be a two day course slated for the 2nd and 3rd December. More details will be given in our next newsletter.

Don't forget to register your staff members for our "Effective Food and Beverage Management" course from the 24th to 29th November.

Full details of our training programmes can be found on our website here
September Arrival Statistics

These are now available on our website and can be consulted by clicking here
Happy Birthday LIAT
National Tourism News

Canadian Fam Trip to visit Antigua next week

The Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority’s Canadian Office is partnering with West Jet on their first Travel Agents Fam, taking place from Saturday October 18th to Saturday October 25th. 

The trip has been designed to educate and enhance the agents knowledge of the destination, many of whom will be visiting for the first time.  The itinerary has been selected based on Agent needs, ensuring that they conduct site inspections at hotels which they feature or may have an interest in adding to their portfolios.  The selected travel agents, do represent a mixed client base, and as such, the a range of properties will be visited: Jumby Bay, Carlisle Bay, Curtain Bluff, Sandals, Hermitage Bay, and the Elite Island resorts.
 
The agents will also visit the most popular selling hotels out of Canada, which are Halcyon Cove, Hawksbill and Jolly Beach resort.  Tradewinds has also been included on the itinerary.
 
The itinerary has a strong social media component supporting the aim of the  Tourism Authority which is to build on its official hashtag #LoveAntiguaBarbuda. So for this trip a member of the Social Media team has been enlisted to form part of the group for the duration of the trip – for the purpose of photographing properties and sharing the information on Social media.  Agents will also be encouraged to share information online, and hotels are being encouraged to share their social media handles for use by agents.

To see the fam itinerary click here

New ABTA destination promotion with LIAT
Antigua and Barbuda Affirms its Commitment to Improvements in the Cruise Tourism Sector at FCCA 2014 Marketing Conference
 

       
Antigua & Barbuda continues to affirm its commitment to fast tracking improvements to the destination’s cruise tourism sector. This was the assurance given to cruise executives by tourism officials at the recently held Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) Marketing Conference, in Philipsburg, St. Maarten from October 6th–10th 2014.

In a series of one-on-one meetings, and media interviews, the Antigua & Barbuda delegation, which was led by the Hon. Asot Michael, Minister of Tourism, Investment, Economic Development, and Energy, assured top cruise-line executives that the new Antigua & Barbuda Labour Party Government was committed to working assiduously on implementing its plans to expand the St. John’s Port facilities. Productive meetings were held with major cruise line partners such as Disney, Carnival and Royal Caribbean Cruise lines.

Minister Michael shared with the Cruise Executives, the Government’s redevelopment plans for the port as well as the new energy initiative, which will offer the cruise lines an opportunity to refuel their ships in Antigua and Barbuda. “We must look at all avenues to increase the likelihood that Antigua and Barbuda is a destination of choice on cruise line itineraries. This initiative, coupled with the redevelopment of the port and landside facilities, means that we will regain our marquee destination status in keeping with the Government’s vision for the industry” said Minister Michael.
Read More...

CHTAEF News
Education Foundation Seeks Donations for NY Times Travel Show Auction

The Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association Education Foundation (CHTAEF) is in dire need of your help this year. The New York Times Travel Show Auction, where more than half of the revenue needed by the Foundation to provide the scholarships and services for the youth of the Caribbean, is being held prior to Caribbean Marketplace, the location where we normally collect hotel stays used for the Auction.

We need you to help us get hotel stays. And we need you to help do this now. BY FRIDAY, OCTOBER 31.

The benefit to the hotels is that they are using “empty available space” to help provide scholarships to Caribbean youth furthering their education in the hospitality field. Some of these students may eventually come back to work at these same hotels that provided stays for their scholarships. And all prizes are given out on a “Space Available” basis.

The added benefit is that these hotels are part of a major promotion of Caribbean vacations that are featured by The New York Times in their Travel Show in January. And thousands of consumers parade by the Foundation Auction Booth at the show each year reading about these hotels. The booth is centrally located by the Caribbean Pavilion which showcases most of the region’s destinations.

This year we are also going to recognize those hotel associations that consistently support the Foundation with hotel stays. We are providing five awards to be given out at the Opening Ceremony at Caribbean Marketplace 2015. The awards are for the following:

1. The Most Hotel Donated Nights from a Large Hotel Association

2. The Most Hotel Donated Nights from a Small Hotel Association

3. The Association with the Largest Percentage of its Hotel Members Providing Stays

4. The Hotel Association with the Largest Increase in Donated Nights Year-Over-Year

5. The Hotel Association that Resulted in the Most Revenue from their Hotel Stays

Please help us help your youth, your future hoteliers by providing hotel stays that we can use for The New York Times Travel Show Auction. And win recognition for your Association and your destination.

Please complete  the Donation Form with the details of your donation. It is a Word Document that can be filled out online and e-mailed back to make it simple. And remember, THE DEADLINE IS OCTOBER 31.

BookAntiguaNow Corner
 
Hotels - Top Producers!
Congratulations to all hotels who have helped make BookAntiguaNow.com a leading online booking option for travellers to Antigua!  As we are in the last quarter of the year, we’d like to update you on the top producers to date:
Revenue
  1. Carlisle Bay
  2. Jolly Beach Resort & Spa
  3. The Catamaran Hotel
  4. Tranquility Bay Antigua
  5. Admirals Inn
Room Nights
  1. Jolly Beach Resort & Spa
  2. The Catamaran Hotel
  3. Tranquility Bay Antigua
  4. Admirals Inn
  5. Carlisle Bay / Trade Winds Hotel (tie)
We encourage you to be proactive and get your hotels on the list!  Rate parity, promotions and keeping the hotel content updated all help in producing more reservations. 
 
As always…
If you have questions or need help with any aspect of your profile on BookAntiguaNow.com, contact Martha Valdivia at
martha.valdivia@regattatravelsolutions.com.
World Tourism Barometer Shows Uptick in International Tourist Arrivals in First Half of 2014
 
Destinations worldwide received some 517 million international tourists between January and June 2014. The figure showed an increase of 22 million comparing to the figure of same period of 2013. Figures indicate a boost to tourism industry despite of turbulent world economy and political instability coupled with Ebola virus threats.

According to the latest UNWTO World Tourism Barometer, growth was strongest in the Americas (+6%) followed by Asia and the Pacific and Europe (both at +5%). By subregion, South Asia and Northern Europe (both +8%) were the best performers, together with North-East Asia and Southern Mediterranean Europe (both +7%).

“These results show that tourism is consolidating the positive performance of recent years, providing development and economic opportunities worldwide”, said UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai. “Indeed, despite geopolitical and economic challenges, the number of international tourist arrivals has grown by 5% a year on average since 2010, a trend that has translated into more economic growth, more exports and more jobs”, he added.

So far, results are in line with the UNWTO forecast issued at the beginning of 2014. For the full year 2014, international tourist arrivals are expected to increase by 4% to 4.5% worldwide, above UNWTO’s long-term forecast of 3.8% per year for the period 2010 to 2020.

Full report

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Our mailing address is:
Island House. Newgate Street
PO Box 454
St John's
Antigua
Tel: (268) 462.0374 Fax: (268) 462.3702
E-mail: ahta@candw.ag

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