Saint Lucia showcased in one of the best cities in the world
Friday, October 19, 2018
by Janelle Norville, GIS

Last month’s UK Showcase by the Saint Lucia Tourism Authority (SLTA) provided the ideal preface for many key industries to meet with travel partners and the media.

During the week of September 10 to 14, Saint Lucia tourism officials headed by the Minister with responsibility for Tourism, Hon. Dominic Fedee, conducted face-to-face meetings with officials from the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA). Topics during the meetings included the impact of Brexit on tourism and growing trends such as sustainable tourism.

Speaking on the importance of the UK Showcase, SLTA Chief Marketing Officer, Tiffany Howard highlighted the strides made. Ms. Howard opined that as trends move toward more authentic experiences, village tourism will fill that growing demand.

“We covered the entire gamete of our tourism business in the UK. We were able to not just strengthen relationships but build some new partnerships as well. Overall for Saint Lucia, it was a huge win.”

Saint Lucia also hosted a UK media lunch with twenty-five prominent media houses. Some of those included The Telegraph, The Times, National Geographic and Hello! Magazine.

The Saint Lucia tourism contingent also conducted two other important trade sessions. The first was a networking session where destination officials presented to potential clients and had a chance to have one-on-one interactions. The second, an appreciation dinner with senior airline officials and tour operators.

The Saint Lucia Hotel and Tourism Authority (SLHTA) was also represented at the showcase by the Harbour Club and the Landings to name a few.

Landings Resort and Spa’s General Manager, Paul Collymore, stated “We have some really good leads. We’re focusing a lot on cricket certainly the Windies 20 this year, and we’re also looking up to England vs the West Indies next year as well. So we are following through on those great organized meetings and we took the opportunity to go to some of our key tour operators in the UK. The UK market for us is not really very strong—certainly the US is—but we are seeing significant growth right now from the UK.”

Meanwhile, representative for the Habour Club Saint Lucia said “Just having that focus on Saint Lucia over two days was very important. we got a lot of comparisons to the World Travel Market where you’re competing with a lot of other destinations, but just having that focus on Saint Lucia, having those key tour operators present was very important for us at Harbour Club as a new property.”

The Saint Lucia delegation held several interviews with the UK press providing island updates which highlighted recent developments across the tourism sector. The team was led by the Minister with responsibility for Tourism, Dominic Fedee who highlighted a great demand for the Saint Lucia product and stressed that no opportunity was unexplored.

“There are some exciting marketing initiatives that are happening in the UK. So in addition to our co-op agreements, you would have seen that we posted online via Travel Saint Lucia the Saint-Lucia-wrapped London taxis so that people who are traveling in and around London are have an opportunity to ask the taxi drivers questions about the destination. The taxi drivers are obviously well-trained. They are Saint Lucia specialists in their own right and it is a very inspiring moment to see the marketing projects of a small island in the Caribbean showcasing itself so expertly in one of the best cities in the world, and one of the largest tourism markets.”

The meetings reinforced Saint Lucia as the number on tourist destination in the world. Latest figures as at July 2018 show the stayover UK market up by 7 percent from 2017.