Several initiatives to come on stream to boost tourism

GINA, GUYANA, Thursday, April 20, 2017

The Ministry of Business’ Department of Tourism is currently working on three initiatives to boost tourism locally. As part of the government’s efforts to enhance Guyana’s tourism product, the Department of Tourism will be launching a ‘Staycation Concept’ in May.

According to the Director General of Tourism, Donald Sinclair, Staycation refers to holidays or vacations spent in one’s own country. He noted that this concept, which entails more affordable trips to local attractions, will increase business opportunities for local tourism operators, as well.

Director General for Tourism, Donald Sinclair

Sinclair explained that the objectives of this concept are to boost domestic tourism through encouraging visits to local attractions, to drive business to local service providers and owners of facilities, and to enhance national awareness of the local tourism product.

There are some key players in the promotion of this concept which are the Department of Tourism which will be responsible for the elaboration of the Policy and Strategy, the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA) which will promote the concept and liaise with the industry, and the Tourism and Hospitality Association of Guyana (THAG).

The Director General noted that business owners will have to provide weekend special packages to attract ‘staycationers’, while  the regional authorities will also promote the visitor- ready hot spots and events while the media will disseminate the information of the concept, interview key players, and garner feedback from staycationers.

The department is currently working on the initiative to brand Guyana as the Caribbean’s premier Easter destination. Sinclair noted that the Bartica Regatta, Rupununi Rodeo and the ‘Corridors of Happiness’ which stretch from Parika to the Joe Vieira Park, and Pegasus Hotel to Beterverwagting and beyond, are tourism products which fit into the initiative, and which will enhance these advantages, Sinclair said.

He added that the tourism possibilities are countless which include cultural adventure that is the Rupununi  Rodeo, river front sporting adventure to Bartica, ‘Kitetours’ on a scale that is possibly unique in the Caribbean and Easter photography and videography.

Additionally the department and other key stakeholders will be meeting to discuss developing the Sports Tourism Policy on April 29, 2017 at the Pegasus Hotel. The workshop will be held under the theme “Improving Sports through Tourism; growing tourism through sports.”

Sinclair made reference to the experience offered when International Cricket matches are being played in Guyana. He highlighted that under other sports the same experience can be enjoyed.  Presentations will be made by Director of Sports, Christopher Jones, Popular Cricket Commentator Joseph ‘Reds’ Perreira, and personnel from the Embassy of Brazil among others, at the workshop.

The Director General emphasised that the Tourism Department will continue to work with the GTA and THAG and other stakeholders to continuously improve the sector.

By: Gabreila Patram

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