CHTA president predicts strong rebound for Caribbean tourism

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CHTA president predicts strong rebound for Caribbean tourism
Source: Twitter @CHTAfeeds
November 17, 2021

Nicola Madden-Greig declared that the worst of the crisis in the sector has already passed and that in the region they managed to contain Covid-19 with solid biosafety protocols


Nicola Madden-Greig, President of the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA), predicts that tourism in the Caribbean should flourish this winter.
 
His optimism about the outlook is despite an especially difficult 2020 season as stakeholders battled the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. "The worst has been contained," said Madden-Greig, attributing a Caribbean success in containing the virus to strong health and safety protocols under the direction of local health ministries and departments, the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA). and other regional and international organizations.
 
The executive's optimism is backed by the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), which recently reported that the Caribbean is recovering faster than any other region in the world and the contribution of tourism to GDP is expected to rise more than 47 percent this year. In contrast, the global economy is forecast to receive a 30.7 percent year-on-year increase in travel and tourism in 2021, representing $ 1.4 trillion and driven primarily by domestic spending. The projected increase for the Caribbean region represents an increase of almost US $ 12 billion, driven by spending on domestic and international travel.

Among the protocols in the region, there have been requirements for visitors to pre-screen and produce a negative test before boarding Caribbean flights, as well as increased vaccination rates for tourism professionals. "We have had great success in implementing such protocols, as evidenced by the low rate of positivity from returning travelers, and there has been little evidence that visitors need care at local hospitals," he said. "This means that we have successfully leveraged our protocols to protect team members, visitors and the wider community."
 
Madden-Greig, who is also the Director of Marketing and Sales for The Courtleigh Hospitality Group in Jamaica, also applauded Caribbean tourism stakeholders for rapidly establishing health safety training programs for staff, which as a result of a well-trained tourism workforce is alert to dangers and knowing how to avoid them.

Nearly 10,000 tourism-related business owners, managers and supervisors throughout the Caribbean have participated in health safety training designed specifically for the tourism industry by CARPHA in collaboration with CHTA. In turn, they have trained thousands more employees in their operations. This has complemented and underpinned an aggressive training regime also implemented by companies, countries and local territories.
 
"We are ready and can safely receive visitors," Madden-Greig said, adding that the plans continue to train tourism industry personnel in these protective measures while continuing to provide an excellent customer service experience. "Our success also depends on the ability of our source markets to continue to control this pandemic as the world collectively seeks to recover and return to normal," he continued.

WTTC research suggests that at the current rate of recovery, Travel & Tourism's contribution to the Caribbean economy could see a further 28.7 percent year-on-year increase in 2022, representing an increase of US $ 10 billion.

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