Tourism working on plan to address “pent up demand” for travel

Tourism working on plan to address “pent up demand” for travel
Director General of Tourism, Joy Jibrilu.

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — There is ‘pent up demand’ for travel to The Bahamas according to Tourism Director General Joy Jibrilu, noting that industry stakeholders have been working collectively on a tourism readiness and recovery plan.

Jibrilu said: “There is pent up demand for sure. When you are looking at where people want to travel the Bahamas is really doing quite well.

“When you look at where people want to travel, they want somewhere that’s isolated. We can offer all of that with our family islands. Proximity to our number one source market means it’s an easy trip from the east coast of the United States.

She continued: “We have kept a very soft tone during COVID-19. We want to inspire travel with empathy. The feedback we have had is just extraordinary. So many said it did inspire them to want to book to The Bahamas. As soon as we know we are opening up we will go back to our brand campaign.”

“One of the things we have been very involved with is working collectively with the whole industry on a tourism readiness and recovery plan. That will involve what the opening of the sector will look like once we do open, whether that it’s the first of July or whenever that is.

“What the plan looks at is every single touch-point in a journey of a visitor to our country , from the airport, to taking a taxi, a bus, going to the hotel and any excursion.”

Jibrilu noted that protocols and standards are being created for the industry once commercial travel resumes.

“We are looking at what needs to be done to ensure the health and safety of Bahamians and our visitors,” she said.

“We want our Bahamians to be well and we don’t want anyone who comes here to infect them. We are working towards establishing protocols and standards; following guidelines and best practices from a global perspective. Airports all have to be configured so that you don’t have people all jammed up,” said Jibrilu.

She added: “We are hoping to begin as soon as we are able, training for taxi drivers, straw vendors etc. We have been very busy but it’s not the Ministry of Tourism alone, but also the Bahamas Hotel Tourism Association, the Nassau Airport Development Company, the port  and excursions. Whoever could be involved we try to involve.”