The Caribbean Tourism Organization Chapter UK & Europe is a private public sector partnership representing more than 60 travel related companies - from airlines and cruise lines, to tour operators, hotel representatives, destinations and tourist attractions. All our members are dedicated professionals willing to share their expertise and provide valuable assistance to travellers and travel organisers, making travel plans to the Caribbean. Among the benefits to its members the organization provides specialized support and technical assistance in sustainable tourism development, marketing, communications, and event planning.
30 May 23NEWS
CTO partners with broadcaster for Caribbean WeekThe Caribbean Tourism Organization has teamed up with Caribbean Broadcasting Union for Caribbean Week in ...Read moreCTO partners with broadcaster for Caribbean Week - News & announcementsThe Caribbean Tourism Organization has teamed up with Caribbean Broadcasting Union for Caribbean Week in New York. This strategic collaboration aims to create a platform showing the latest developments and trends in the tourism industry. It hopes to amplify the reach to regional and international audiences through content sharing and distribution. Under the agreement, it will leverage CBU’s media broadcast and digital network spanning 20 countries. It will air tourism updates and interviews with key stakeholders, including ministers and tourism leaders an. “This partnership will offer viewers within and beyond the region a comprehensive understanding of the efforts to revive the Caribbean’s tourism industry,” said Neil Walters, Acting Secretary General of the CTO. Caribbean Week features a lineup of events and business meetings. They will discuss the critical issues for Caribbean tourism. Attendees can look forward to a Welcome Cocktail Reception hosted by CTO Allied Members and a Tourism Industry Marketing Conference. The CTO will also host the popular Media Marketplace. More than 20 CTO member countries and territories will be in attendance.
16 May 23NEWS
What a Marketplace!The Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association’s (CHTA) Caribbean Travel Marketplace, which took place in Barbados last week, ...Read moreWhat a Marketplace! - News & announcementsThe Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association’s (CHTA) Caribbean Travel Marketplace, which took place in Barbados last week, surpassed all expectations, leaving participants inspired and invigorated. Setting the dynamic, positive tone of the event was Barbados Prime Minister Mia Mottley, who delivered a powerful keynote speech at the opening of the second annual Caribbean Travel Forum. Her eloquent call to Caribbean stakeholders to be “shapers” rather than “takers” resonated deeply, emphasizing the need to develop the tourism product for the benefit of the region and its people. The Prime Minister’s remarks shed light on the need for a paradigm shift in the Caribbean tourism industry. She advocated for a recalibration of the sector to reduce foreign dependency and foster economic empowerment for Caribbean citizens. By utilizing the region’s savings and actively involving its people, the services sector — particularly tourism — can continue to be a driving force for further improvements in the quality of life in the Caribbean and other small island developing states worldwide. The collaborative work of the CHTA team, along with the hosts from Barbados, particularly Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. and the Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association, paid dividends. Working tirelessly and dedicating long hours, they ensured the success of the 41st Caribbean Travel Marketplace, the first-ever held in Barbados. Their efforts did not go unnoticed, as Marketplace received glowing reviews, with many proclaiming it to be the best one to date.
Jamaica and Eleuthera, Bahamas take top CHTA resilience honorsJamaica and Eleuthera in the Bahamas were announced winners of CHTA’s 2023 Destination Resilience Awards in Barbados last week. Jamaica emerged the winner in Category A, reserved for destinations with total 2019 stopover visitor arrivals greater than 500,000. Initiatives such as the JAMAICA CARES program, a public-private partnership that took a holistic approach to resuming post-pandemic travel successfully positioned Jamaica at the forefront of the international tourism recovery. In Category B, for destinations with total stopover arrivals under 500,000, Eleuthera in the Bahamas was victorious. Eleuthera has demonstrated a commitment to a more sustainable future with efforts such as the Island School, Cape Eleuthera Institute, the Eleuthera Sustainability Council Cooperative Society and the Center for Training Institute. Bonaire, St. Maarten and St. Lucia were recognized with honorable mentions.
07 Dec 21NEWS
CTO launches online training and development centerThe Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) has reached agreement with the Canada-based e-learning courseware development company, ...Read moreCTO launches online training and development center - News & announcementsThe Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) has reached agreement with the Canada-based e-learning courseware development company, Velsoft, to further advance the regional tourism development agency's virtual training and development program. As part of the agreement, Velsoft will host the 'Caribbean Tourism Institute,' the CTO's online campus developed by the Canadian firm. The new portal is an open online educational, training and development learning centre designed to provide affordable access to training opportunities for everyone who works, or aspires to work, in the Caribbean tourism and hospitality sector. "Velsoft has been working closely with us to help us realise one of our key human resources development objectives of increasing the access of Caribbean nationals to high quality training and educational opportunities," said Neil Walters, the CTO's acting secretary general. " As part of the agreement, Velsoft will provide all of the resources to convert CTO courses into e-learning activities and will allow the institute full access to its non-accredited courses, which will be promoted under the institute's brand. "Velsoft is excited to partner with the Caribbean Tourism Organization on the ambitious initiative to raise the collective level of skills in the Caribbean's tourism sector," said Jim Fitt, chief executive of Velsoft. Velsoft will release at least two new online courses each month to ensure the latest and most applicable training is made available to over 2.5 million professionals in the Caribbean's hospitality and tourism sector.
12 Nov 21NEWS
CTO hosting ‘Caribbean Comeback’ agent webinarThe Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) will hosts an online educational session next week to bring ...Read moreCTO hosting ‘Caribbean Comeback’ agent webinar - News & announcementsThe Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) will hosts an online educational session next week to bring travel advisors up to speed on the latest happenings across the region. It is for travel advisers who sell the Caribbean, who will be addressed by 20 CTO member countries sharing information on the latest protocols, new flights and hotel openings, and other developments. The webinar is part of a program of activities by the CTO and its member countries in observance of Caribbean Tourism Month 2021, which has as the theme: Caribbean Comeback. The theme was chosen to emphasise that the region is on its way back from the Covid-19 pandemic and is also an invitation to visitors to rediscover the Caribbean. During the month the CTO and its member countries will undertake a social media campaign using the hashtag #CaribbeanComeback with live demonstrations, including a cultural and culinary festival on Wednesday 24 November. The webinar begins at 10:00am Eastern time (3:00pm in the UK) on 18 November. Agents can register at https://bit.ly/3FDuCjU
12 Oct 21NEWS
Caribbean tourism outperforms rest of the worldPreliminary data from the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) show that the region outperformed the rest ...Read moreCaribbean tourism outperforms rest of the world - News & announcementsPreliminary data from the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) show that the region outperformed the rest of the world in the first half of 2021. During this period, international tourist arrivals to the Caribbean reached 6.6 million, representing a 12% decline when compared to the same period last year. By the end of May arrivals were at 5.2 million, down 30.8% for the corresponding period in 2020, considerably better than the global average of a 65.1% decline. Of the main regions analysed, the Americas, including the Caribbean, registered a 46.9% drop, otherwise, no other region performed better than a 63% fall in arrivals. While the tourist arrivals continued to lag pre-pandemic numbers, the first half year performance was boosted by a second quarter spurt when overnight tourist visits to the Caribbean jumped between ten and 37 times greater than those in the corresponding months in 2020. In absolute terms, there was a steady improvement, as arrival numbers increased from one million in April to 1.2 million in May to 1.5 million in June, according to CRO data. Among the reasons for the strong second quarter was a rise in outbound travel from the region's primary market, the US, from which tourist visits reached 4.3 million in the first half of the year, a 21.7% increase. Other contributing factors included the easing of some travel restrictions and an increase in airlift. "These are encouraging signs that the hard work our member countries have put into adapting to the changing environment of the pandemic is beginning to pay dividends," said Neil Walters, the CTO's acting Secretary General. "Even as we embrace a recovery mindset, we must continue to be mindful of the challenges we currently face and the potential challenges a dynamic situation like the pandemic can present. The Caribbean tourism sector is known to be one of the most resilient in the world."
04 Oct 21Partner News
Barbados Tourism ReboundsBarbados recorded over 10,000 air passenger arrivals after months of being hard-hit by a global ...Read moreBarbados Tourism Rebounds - News & announcementsBarbados recorded over 10,000 air passenger arrivals after months of being hard-hit by a global pandemic. For the first time since December 2020, the local tourism industry has recorded a major tourism milestone with the latest statistics from the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. (BTMI) suggesting a positive turn for the industry ahead of the 2021/2022 winter season. During the period July 2021, some 10,819 visitors travelled to Barbados. This total represented a significant increase of 6,745 visitors when compared to the corresponding period of July 2020. The United States (US)came out on top as they copped a 43.3% market share, while the United Kingdom (UK) contributed 34.4% of business with 3,722 arrivals for the reporting period. This occurred after Barbados was added to the UK COVID-19 Green watchlist. Barbados has been fortunate to be placed on this list for the second time since the beginning of COVID-19 pandemic. For the same period, Caribbean arrival figures stood at 1,391 and 390 arrivals from Canada. This represented an increase in arrivals from both markets year on year. Interim CEO of BTMI, Craig Hinds, described the achievement as a step in the right direction after the tireless efforts, on and off scene, to re-build the tourism product. He stated that “Barbados has, and continues to weather this COVID-19 storm, but while this period has been difficult for the industry, the BTMI is so pleased to see the recent sprouts of positive growth. This growth is a direct result of the excellent sales and marketing efforts in our overseas markets through campaigns like our “Sweet Summer Savings” promotion, as well as maintaining strong partnerships with our airline, cruise and tourism partners.” Promotional Activities in Market BTMI continues to tow a line of strong representation in the United States market, sponsoring this year’s “Citi Open” which was held in Washington, D.C. This resulted in Italian teenager and competition winner, Jannik Sinner, winning a five-day/four-night vacation to Barbados. Taking place from July 31 – August 8, 2021, “Citi Open” was the fifth biggest event in US professional tennis, and featured some of the best tennis players. Known to align with world-class partners, the event also attracts VIPs and celebrities, along with over 5,600 hours of global broadcast in 177 markets. Not far away in New York City, all eyes were on Barbados for “Fox and Friends with Chef Javon Cummins” as the flavours of Barbados filled the Fox Square. Chef Javon Cummins, joined the hosts of Fox and Friends for their wedding taste testing segment. This time through culinary, activities like this, which displays all that Barbados has to offer, have proven why visitors continue to choose Barbados as their destination of choice. Barbados was also on show in Greenwich, Connecticut, where the “2021 Greenwich Polo Season” provided a major boost for the island’s tourism product. The interim CEO of BTMI said that “it was the perfect partnership for Barbados as Greenwich, Connecticut is ideally located within close proximity to New York. It is easily accessible to residents who utilizes JFK as the preferred airport of choice for both commercial and private jet travel. This partnership provided us with an opportunity to engage and reposition Barbados as a viable post-COVID option for affluent travellers with above average disposable income as we defend existing airlift from JFK, while trying to create the environment for incremental capacity as circumstances permit.” Patrons were also treated to the culinary delights of Barbadian Chefs such as Chef Creig Greenidge, Chef Trevon Stoute and Chef Javon Cummins. Promotional Activities in Barbados In July, BTMI teamed up with Sandals Resort as they brought fifteen United States radio stations from eleven cities to Barbados to give listeners a chance at winning a four-day/three-night vacation to Sandals Resort in Barbados. The radio stations broadcasted live from Sandals Royal Barbados and included tourism officials led by Sen. the Hon. Lisa Cummins, Minister of Tourism and International Transport. The promotion, which was also supported by American Airlines, reached over 4,000,000+ listeners. Additionally, Prime Minister of Barbados, the Hon. Mia Mottley, was the highlight of the British Broadcasting Corporation’s (BBC) filming with award-winning journalist and presenter, Zeinab Badawi. Ms. Badawi and crew visited Barbados to film two episodes of Global Questions with Prime Minister Mottley and the Hon. Kirk Humphrey, Minister of Maritime Affairs and the Blue Economy. Key topics facing the island and the region were tackled; as well as one episode of “Hard Talk” with Sir Hilary Beckles. The episodes aired this month to their entire BBC World viewership. On the heels of “Global Questions”, British broadcaster ITV followed suit, selecting Barbados as their location to film a segment for their popular daytime talk show, “The Lorraine Show”. Presenter for the segment was award-winning author Candice Brathwaite, who came to the island to learn more about her Barbadian ancestry. Born and raised in Brixton, London, she was primarily raised by her Bajan grandparents who came to the UK as part of the Windrush Generation. Welcome Stamp Also contributing to the increasing arrival numbers, was the “Welcome Stamp” programme. It was not surprising to see that the majority of uptake came from the destination’s primary source markets of the U.S., U.K., Canada and Ireland. With one year of success already under its belt, the “Welcome Stamp” programme was recently renewed for another year, presenting openings for more digital nomads and other professionals to live and work from Barbados. Mr. Hinds stated that “the programme has proven to be a successful innovation which has positioned Barbados as a leader in the world’s eyes as we adapt our tourism product to complement the changing global climate.” He added that “many global citizens have made Barbados their home; millennials, families and investors alike, and BTMI is therefore looking forward to continuing the promotion of the initiative for another year, allowing those already here to extend their stay, while giving prospective “Welcome Stampers” the chance to experience all that Barbados has to offer.”
26 Sep 21Partner News
Message by Neil Walters, Secretary General (Acting) of the CTO in Observance of World Tourism Day Sept 27, 2021The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), the region’s tourism development agency, joins the global community in ...Read moreMessage by Neil Walters, Secretary General (Acting) of the CTO in Observance of World Tourism Day Sept 27, 2021 - News & announcementsThe Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), the region’s tourism development agency, joins the global community in celebrating World Tourism Day 2021 under the theme, Tourism for Inclusive Growth. In observance of the day, the CTO and approximately a dozen regional and international partners are collaborating on a virtual event aimed at highlighting and addressing the challenges we face in forging a sustainable tourism sector and identifying the opportunities to build a more socially inclusive, sustainable and smart sector. It’s a clear sign of the importance we all place on collaboration and inclusion, a key plank of the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) #17, ‘Partnerships for Goals’ which emphasises inclusive partnerships at the global, regional, national and local levels and shared goals placing people and the planet at the centre of development. World Tourism Day is also being celebrated at a time when the region’s tourism sector is beginning to emerge from the prolonged impact of COVID-19. Some of our member countries have reported record stayover arrivals during the months of July and August, while others show their arrival numbers trending in the right direction and even approaching 2019 levels. We still have to be aware of the challenges and potential hurdles as we move to a recovery mindset, but these are encouraging signs that the hard work our member countries have put into adapting to the changing environment of the pandemic, is beginning to pay dividends. Our progress amidst the challenges gives hope to the millions of Caribbean nationals who depend on tourism for a living, either directly or indirectly. In celebrating our incremental successes, this year’s theme is a reminder that, even as arrival numbers rise and tourism revenue increases, we begin to revise our measures of success to include an analysis of the social and economic benefits of the sector. The new tourism approach must ensure that our local communities participate in the renewed tourism economy. Similarly, additional focus must be placed on vulnerable groups, including women, the youth, the disabled and indigenous and marginalized communities, to ensure that they are meaningfully included in the tourism economy. In its latest Caribbean Quarterly bulletin, the Inter-American Development Bank stated that in 2020, nine of the twelve Caribbean countries it reviewed suffered double-digit shock to real gross domestic product from the pandemic and drew a correlation between these results and the Tourism Dependency Index. These nine countries are in the top 20 most tourism-dependent countries globally. As we look towards the future, sustainable tourism used as a development tool, at the forefront of the region’s economic recovery, can help to strengthen other sectors against the effects of future shocks. Sustainable tourism is already recognised as a contributor directly or indirectly to most of the UN sustainable development goals, including gender equality, decent work and economic growth. The CTO has recognised that to achieve these goals, it’s imperative that we forge alliances and partnerships with organisations and institutions that play a meaningful role in contributing to the social and economic development of the region. One such example is our collaboration with the Compete Caribbean Partnership Facility (CCPF) which is funding community-based tourism pilot projects using the cluster approach in rural and indigenous areas in three Caribbean countries. By providing opportunities such as these to vulnerable groups, we enhance the capacity of Caribbean people to play a leading role in their own development. We also demonstrate that in addition to being a primary economic revenue earner for the Caribbean, tourism can be inclusive and by extension promote growth in all of our communities.
30 Aug 21Partner News
What’s New In The Bahamas In SeptemberEscape to the turquoise waters of The Bahamas to explore ultimate island seclusion and marvel ...Read moreWhat’s New In The Bahamas In September - News & announcementsEscape to the turquoise waters of The Bahamas to explore ultimate island seclusion and marvel at the natural wonders beneath the surface. With new adventure-seeking excursions, renovated amenities and hot deals, travellers looking to book their next vacation are in for an unforgettable experience. NEWS UNEXSO Announces New Glass Bottom Boating Experience to Shark Junction – The most adventurous and thrill-seeking travellers can now enjoy the newest boat excursion from Port Lucaya, the Glass Bottom Boat to Shark Junction Tour, with three lively stops including the world famous “Shark Junction,” home to dozens of Caribbean Reef Sharks, nurse sharks and large stingrays. Tiger Woods Returns to Albany for the 2021 Hero World Challenge – World-renowned golfer and luxury resort co-owner, Tiger Woods, prepares to host the 2021 Hero World Challenge at Albany, The Bahamas beginning Monday, November 29 – December 5, 2021, to support youth education across the globe. State-of-the-Art Superyacht Friendly Marina Opens in Walker’s Cay, Northern Abacos – Owners Carl and Gigi Allen welcome back fishermen to the boating capital of The Bahamas with the reopening of Walker’s Cay. The newly enlarged marina can accommodate superyachts and plans to add additional amenities including a pool, spa and bungalows. Tropic Ocean Airways Launches Airlift Services from Great Harbour Cay – Beginning September 2, Tropic Ocean Airways adds scheduled flight options to Great Harbour Cay in the Berry Islands. Floridians can now book stress-free services from Fort Lauderdale to Nassau, Bimini and The Berry Islands. The Bahamas Nominated for “Caribbean’s Best Casino Destination 2021” – The Islands of The Bahamas have been nominated for the World Casino Awards. Travellers can cast their votes for free online now through October 15, 2021. PROMOTIONS AND OFFERS For a complete listing of deals and packages for The Bahamas, visit www.bahamas.com/deals-packages. Grab a Drink and Stay Awhile at Margaritaville Beach Resort – When staying 14 days or longer at Margaritaville Beach Resort, guests receive special pricing up to 40% off regular rates. Travel window is now through December 31, 2021. $150 Fee Credit for Out Island Vacationers – Private pilots receive a $150 fee credit for a pre-booked two-night hotel stay at any participating Bahama Out Islands Promotion Board member property before October 31, 2021. ABOUT THE BAHAMAS With over 700 islands and cays and 16 unique island destinations, The Bahamas lies just 50 miles off the coast of Florida, offering an easy flyaway escape that transports travellers away from their everyday. The Islands of The Bahamas have world-class fishing, diving, boating, birding, and nature-based activities, thousands of miles of the earth’s most spectacular water and pristine beaches waiting for families, couples and adventurers. Explore all the islands have to offer at www.bahamas.com or on Facebook, YouTube or Instagram to see why It’s Better in The Bahamas.
03 Aug 21NEWS
CTO Launches Caribbean Community Tourism NetworkThe Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) has launched the Caribbean Community Tourism Network (CCTN) to provide ...Read moreCTO Launches Caribbean Community Tourism Network - News & announcementsThe Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) has launched the Caribbean Community Tourism Network (CCTN) to provide a platform to support the continued development of community-based tourism in the Caribbean. The network will enable the exchange of best practices among CTO member countries and interested tourism development partners. It will also help identify capacity-building needs as well as challenges and opportunities for community tourism development. "This network provides an avenue for CTO members to share knowledge, resources, and best practices to improve community tourism experiences and economic impact," it said. The CCTN's functions include support of regional development strategies in CBT and recommending activities and actions with a view to enhancing the visibility and value of community tourism as a regional tourism product. The network is one of the initiatives of the CTO, which has identified community tourrism as a regional tourism development strategy. Other initiatives include a toolkit for product development, produced in partnership with the Compete Caribbean Partnership Facility (CCPF). The toolkit includes a 'how to' guide to assist communities and entrepreneurs develop profitable community tourism experiences and enterprises. It also includes guidelines and templates to support experience design and product enhancement.