The Caribbean Tourism Organization is looking to deepen its relationship with the Middle East’s largest tour operator.
The Barbados-based regional tourism development agency is meeting this week with Emirates Holidays at the Arabian Travel Market to build on the relationship which began last year when the CTO conducted an in-house training program in Dubai for 40 Emirates Holidays staff.
That came after Emirates airlines had announced flights from Dubai to Fort Lauderdale which, thanks to a codeshare with JetBlue, opened up much of the Caribbean in a new way for travelers from the region.
“Arabian Travel Market presents a great opportunity for the Caribbean to take our product and services to a wider market. There is a great deal of interest in the Caribbean, and our sporting and cricketing legends have really helped to peak interest in the Caribbean throughout the Middle East and Asia,” said Carol Hay, the CTO’s director of marketing for the UK and Europe.
On hand with the CTO team this week include Jamaican Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett and officials from the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism.
“We are particularly excited about the opportunity to host two destination briefings for the travel agents, as we know that product knowledge and networking are key to expanding our reach in these markets,” Hay said. “It’s also important to have a sustained presence at international tourism events; tourism is an international business, and it is import to be in the arena where important decisions and contacts are made.”
The United Arab Emirates has been a major tourism investor in the Caribbean in recent years, most notably with several major projects in Antigua and Barbuda.