NEW YORK -- The
Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) will take aim at the business
of competition in the global tourism industry when it hosts the
27th annual Caribbean Tourism Conference, to be held Oct. 17 to 20
at the Wyndham Aruba Beach Resort & Casino.
will focus on the development of inventive programs that will help
drive business to the Caribbean, according to Jean Holder,
secretary general of the Caribbean Tourism Organization.
The theme sends a
message that sustaining tourism growth cannot be done without
creating and investing in new business opportunities, Holder
indicate that the region had an 8% growth in tourist arrivals in
first-quarter 2004, compared with the same period a year
Holder said that
the increase continues the progress made in 2003, when stayover
arrivals increased by 7% during the winter over the same period in
warned that the Caribbean must not become complacent. Increased
competition and the changing environment dictate that our tourism
sector be dynamic, he said.
Aruba last hosted
the conference in 1997, and island tourism officials view this
years conference as an opportunity to showcase the destination and
bring agents up to speed on new developments and attractions,
according to Aruba Tourism Authority officials.
tours for delegates will be offered on the last afternoon of the
conference. There will be five tours covering sightseeing,
shopping, snorkeling, and visits to the Archaeological Museum, the
Aruba Aloe Museum & Factory and the Numismatic Museum of
post-tours of Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao also will be offered from
Oct. 14 to 17 and Oct. 21 to 24. The Aruba fams will include a mix
of sightseeing and land and water sports. Agent rates range from
$17.50 to $44.
Bonaire fams will
include site inspections, sightseeing, kayaking, snorkeling and
windsurfing. On Curacao, agents will inspect hotels, sightsee, swim
and visit the Kura Hulanda Museum, Seaquarium Park and Dolphin
the conference can earn Aruba Certification Credits (ACE) by taking
part in a free four-hour ACE training program on Oct. 17.
Niche-market workshops on incentive travel and special-needs
travelers also will be offered.
registration rates start at $295 per person, double, and $425,
single. The price covers up to four nights accommodations with
taxes and service charges, roundtrip transfers, business sessions,
several meals and social events. Registration forms can be
downloaded at www.onecaribbean.org.
is offering a 75% discount on unrestricted coach fares for agents.
For those coming from Miami, Dutch Caribbean Air has a roundtrip
rate of $232.75, which must be purchased from the airlines office
in Miami. For information, call (800) 327-7230.
reporter Gay Nagle Myers, send e-mail to [email protected].