Saint Lucia anticipates UK market so surge in 2011

Saint Lucia anticipates UK market so surge in 2011

The Caribbean island state of Saint Lucia expects a record number of arrivals from the UK next year. Having posted an 18 percent increase in arrivals by the end of October, the Saint Lucia Tourist Board believes that 2011 will be another strong year of tourism growth. Louis Lewis, director of tourism, told Travel Daily that an increase in flight connections and a recent run of industry awards would further cement the island’s reputation as the most romantic getaway in the Caribbean. “Next year we hope that the momentum continues,” Lewis said. “Virgin Atlantic will increase capacity by adding a fourth flight from April and BA is increasing its schedule from five flights per week to a daily service. We have just won the World Travel Awards most romantic destination in the world for the eight year in a row and the island has become a specialist in the weddings and honeymoon market.” At present, nearly a third of all arrivals to Saint Lucia are from the UK, with tourism itself representing a massive 64 percent of GDP. To build on this growth, the Saint Lucia Tourist Board is keen to extend its partnership with the UK travel trade and continue the development of its online expert programme. To date, more than 400 industry personnel have signed up for the training programme, which can be completed in a number of stages. As well as offering opportunities for fam trips, the resource is already directing consumer traffic to the newly qualified agents. “Consumers are still opting to book their holidays with travel agents rather than online, so a programme like this is a great tool to increase the agent’s knowledge and help them in turn drive sales.”

Gary Marshall
Written by:
Gary Marshall
Posted On:
Posted In: