The Clo­ser To­get­her, The Stron­ger

MULTIDESTI­NATION COULD BE THE WAY OUT TO PRY FULLY IN­TO THE COMPETITIV­E TRA­VEL MAR­KET. TI­ME IS RIPE FOR LA­TIN AME­RI­CAN AND CA­RIB­BEAN COUN­TRIES TO JOIN HANDS AND CO­ME UP WITH MO­RE LURING PRODUCTS

Excelencias Turísticas del caribe y las Américas - - Especial / Special -

Vol­ca­noes, jun­gle areas, bea­ches, sun, cul­tu­re, his­tory, re­mains of an­cient ci­vi­li­za­tions, gas­tro­nomy, moun­tains, co­ral re­efs, wrecks, wa­ter­falls, biosp­he­re re­ser­ves, he­ri­ta­ge ci­ties, uni­que flo­ra and fau­na, beau­ti­ful and jaunty peo­ple, pla­ces full of mys­te­ries, countless ca­ves, re­li­gious sanc­tua­ries, mi­nes, an­cient tem­ples, pa­la­ces and stair­ways; is­lets and rocky out­crops, un­tap­ped sce­nery, man­gro­ve thic­kets, fancy ho­tels, dream buil­dings, ideal cli­ma­te... La­tin Ame­ri­ca and the Ca­rib­bean ha­ve all that much.

The­re­fo­re, a con­nois­seur awa­re of the po­ten­tials of the con­ti­nent, such as Jor­ge Her­nan­dez Del­ga­do, who chai­red the Con­fe­de­ra­tion of Tou­rism Or­ga­ni­za­tions of La­tin Ame­ri­ca (COTAL), con­si­ders that due to the his­to­ri­cal, cul­tu­ral, na­tu­ral and eth­no­grap­hic wealth of the peoples that ma­ke up this area, "the tou­rism sec­tor is ca­lled to be the top eco­no­mic po­wer­hou­se gi­ven its ra­te of growth and its con­tri­bu­tion to so­cial developmen­t". The en­cou­ra­ging glo­bal re­sults of 2018 lay this ba­re.

Ac­cor­ding to da­ta from the World Tou­rism Or­ga­ni­za­tion (UNWTO), the tra­vel in­dustry wrap­ped up last year with

the re­cord 1.4 bi­llion in­ter­na­tio­nal arri­vals, up, 6% from 2017. And alt­hough the Ame­ri­cas re­mai­ned ho­ve­ring so­mew­he­re in the midd­le with a 3% growth, the fi­gu­res con­ti­nue to be en­cou­ra­ging, es­pe­cially when the on­going year is ex­pec­ted to sport an in­crea­se so­mew­he­re bet­ween 3% and 4%.

In a re­gion-by-re­gion break­down, the Midd­le East (10%) and Afri­ca (7%) out­per­for­med the world ave­ra­ge, whi­le Asia-Pa­ci­fic re­gion and Eu­ro­pe equa­led clung to a 6% up­tick. The Ame­ri­cas re­eled in 217 mi­llion over­night tou­rists, alt­hough with mi­xed re­sults in all des­ti­na­tions.

That is why Her­nan­dez Del­ga­do stands up for the view that tho­se be­ne­fits reaped by our coun­tries are not good enough, nor that each one in­di­vi­dually is wor­king for the sa­ke of se­cu­ring bet­ter ser­vi­ces. "It re­qui­res us to be clo­ser to­get­her and put all the strengths to­get­her to fully en­ter this competitiv­e of­fer that tou­rists are in­crea­singly as­king for. It is ne­ces­sary to stop com­pe­ting; we must join hands to of­fer mo­re at­trac­ti­ve products".

So, ex­ploi­ting this ad­van­ta­geo­us al­ter­na­ti­ve may be the best so­lu­tion for

the peoples of La­tin Ame­ri­ca and the Ca­rib­bean if they really want to cap­tu­re, for exam­ple, tho­se tra­ve­lers who co­me from dis­tant mar­kets, such as Asia, the Midd­le East and Eu­ro­pe (cu­rrently they ac­count for 7% and 17%, res­pec­ti­vely, of the in­flow of in­ter­na­tio­nal vi­si­tors), ea­ger to ma­ke the most of a long-haul trips by vi­si­ting se­ve­ral coun­tries in the same re­gion and thus en­ri­ching their tra­vel ex­pe­rien­ce.

Multidesti­nation is al­so a very ef­fec­ti­ve way of ma­te­ria­li­zing that as­pi­ra­tions of our peoples for the sa­ke of our ul­ti­ma­te and ge­nui­ne eco­no­mic and so­cial in­te­gra­tion of La­tin Ame­ri­ca and the Ca­rib­bean.

MULTIDESTI­NATION TRA­VEL PLAN

Fa­ci­li­ta­tion of tra­vel in coun­tries to vi­sit (vi­sas and bor­der cros­sing); air and land trans­port, grea­ter con­nec­ti­vity in des­ti­na­tions, com­mon brand and ima­ge, com­mon products and routes, and the ro­le of tour ope­ra­tors, ho­tel com­pa­nies and ot­her tra­vel service pro­vi­ders, are the fi­ve fun­da­men­tal cha­llen­ges that must be ta­ken in­to ac­count when de­sig­ning multidesti­nation tou­rism plans, ac­cor­ding to the UNWTO re­com­men­da­tions.

Re­gar­ding the first point, the­re are ex­pe­rien­ces in the con­ti­nent that spark off sy­ner­gies with the pur­po­se of pro­mo­ting pros­pe­rity, such as the co­lla­bo­ra­tion es­ta­blis­hed by the Pa­ci­fic Allian­ce (Chi­le, Co­lom­bia, Me­xi­co and Peru). Un­doub­tedly, the fact that, for ins­tan­ce, vi­sas are not re­qui­red to go from one pla­ce to anot­her, has sig­ni­fi­cantly in­crea­sed the num­ber of tou­rists mo­ving among the­se coun­tries.

The­re are many that ha­ve em­bra­ced that concept in the best in­ter­est of carrying on its pro­mo­tion in La­tin Ame­ri­ca and the Ca­rib­bean. Ame­ri­can Air­li­nes has joi­ned the La­tin Ame­ri­can and Ca­rib­bean Air Trans­port As­so­cia­tion (AL­TA). The fact of the mat­ter is that this com­pany, to­get­her with its re­gio­nal part­ner, Ame­ri­can Ea­gle, or­ga­ni­zes on ave­ra­ge about 6700 daily flights to around as many as 350 des­ti­na­tions in mo­re than 50 na­tions.

In re­cent years, crui­se tou­rism in La­tin Ame­ri­ca has al­so been ex­pan­ding mo­re and mo­re, sin­ce ship­ping com­pa­nies ha­ve que un to­tal de 272 cru­ce­ros ope­ren en ju­nio de 2019) en una re­gión en la que, a de­cir de la Or­ga­ni­za­ción de Tu­ris­mo del Ca­ri­be (CTO), ha­brá un al­za en el tu­ris­mo.

Ya exis­ten ex­pe­rien­cias co­mo las que han pues­to en prác­ti­ca Cu­ba y Re­pú­bli­ca Do­mi­ni­ca­na con el fin de acer­car aún más el mer­ca­do chino, prin­ci­pal emi­sor de tu­ris­tas del or­be. Por esa ra­zón des­de ha­ce un tiem­po, Air Chi­na inau­gu­ró un vue­lo que une a Pe­kín con La Ha­ba­na, con es­ca­la téc­ni­ca en Mon­treal, Ca­na­dá, el cual cons­ti­tu­ye la pri­me­ra co­ne­xión di­rec­ta en­tre el gi­gan­te asiá­ti­co y el Ca­ri­be, y su pri­me­ra ru­ta con Amé­ri­ca La­ti­na, una re­gión po­co vi­si­ta­da por ese gru­po nu­me­ro­so de pa­sean­tes.

Por­que ha de­mos­tra­do que se tra­ta de una so­lu­ción fac­ti­ble pa­ra el de­sa­rro­llo, la Aso­cia­ción de Es­ta­dos del Ca­ri­be apues­ta con fuer­za por el multidesti­no, una vi­sión que des­tie­rra la creen­cia de que lo que fun­cio­na es el mo­de­lo de úni­co des­tino, don­de ca­da cual com­pi­te por su por­ción en el mer­ca­do.

Sin du­das, son gran­des los be­ne­fi­cios, pe­ro to­da­vía que­da mu­cho por ha­cer, más allá de lo­grar la eli­mi­na­ción de vi­sa­dos y una ma­yor co­nec­ti­vi­dad en­tre paí­ses y re­gio­nes. Re­sul­ta vi­tal, en­tre mu­chas otras ac­cio­nes, unir vo­lun­ta­des en­tre los em­pre­sa­rios tu­rís­ti­cos y las au­to­ri­da­des pa­ra fa­ci­li­tar los via­jes; pro­pi­ciar me­jo­res ne­go­cia­cio­nes con los pro­vee­do­res (ho­te­les, ae­ro­lí­neas, trans­por­tis­tas, etc.); for­ta­le­cer la ca­li­dad de los ser­vi­cios vin­cu­la­dos a es­te sec­tor; y, al mis­mo tiem­po, di­se­ñar pro­duc­tos y ru­tas de ma­ne­ra con­jun­ta.

Se­rá muy útil la ca­pa­ci­dad de pro­mo­ción que ten­gan las agen­cias y los tu­ro­pe­ra­do­res pa­ra ven­der la be­lle­za dis­tin­gue a Amé­ri­ca La­ti­na y el Ca­ri­be, cu­yos paí­ses tie­nen en sus ma­nos la opor­tu­ni­dad de con­ver­tir­se en des­tino tu­rís­ti­co por ex­ce­len­cia.

Multidesti­nation is al­so a very ef­fec­ti­ve way of ma­te­ria­li­zing that as­pi­ra­tions of our peoples for the sa­ke of our ul­ti­ma­te and ge­nui­ne eco­no­mic and so­cial in­te­gra­tion of La­tin Ame­ri­ca and the Ca­rib­bean

El multidesti­no es, ade­más, una ma­ne­ra muy efec­ti­va de ma­te­ria­li­zar esa as­pi­ra­ción de nues­tros pue­blos de que fi­nal­men­te se dé una ver­da­de­ra in­te­gra­ción eco­nó­mi­ca y so­cial en Amé­ri­ca La­ti­na y el Ca­ri­be

set their sights on this part of the world, whe­re they see a pro­mi­sing fu­tu­re for their bu­si­ness.

Re­pre­sen­ting 48% of all iti­ne­ra­ries world­wi­de, the Grea­ter Ca­rib­bean leads the pack as far as crui­se in­dustry growth is con­cer­ned, ac­cor­ding to the Flo­ri­da Ca­rib­bean Crui­se As­so­cia­tion (FCCA), which con­trols 95% of the North Ame­ri­can mar­ket sha­re and 85% world­wi­de with a fleet of over a hun­dred li­ners.

The crui­se in­dustry is ex­pec­ted to con­ti­nue ma­king head­way th­roug­hout 2019. So­me 30 mi­llion pas­sen­gers are sup­po­sed to arri­ve du­ring the cour­se of the year (6% mo­re than the 28.2 mi­llion re­gis­te­red in 2018). The­se are very fa­vo­ra­ble con­di­tions for multidesti­nation plans, sin­ce a grand to­tal of 272 crui­ses are ex­pec­ted to ope­ra­te in Ju­ne 2019 in a re­gion whe­re, ac­cor­ding to the Ca­rib­bean Tou­rism Or­ga­ni­za­tion (CTO), the­re will be a ma­jor in­crea­se in tou­rism.

The­re are al­ready ex­pe­rien­ces li­ke tho­se that both Cu­ba and the Do­mi­ni­can Re­pu­blic ha­ve put in­to prac­ti­ce in or­der to ma­ke the most of the Chi­ne­se mar­ket, by far the top out­bound tra­vel mar­ket world­wi­de. With that view in mind and for so­me ti­me now, Air Chi­na has star­ted a Bei­jing-Ha­va­na flight with a tech­ni­cal sto­po­ver in Mon­treal, Ca­na­da, mar­king the first nons­top flight bet­ween the Asian country and the Ca­rib­bean, and its first rou­te with La­tin Ame­ri­ca, a re­gion ra­rely vi­si­ted by this lar­ge chunk of vi­si­tors.

Al­ready pro­ven as a fea­si­ble so­lu­tion for developmen­t, the As­so­cia­tion of Ca­rib­bean Sta­tes is strongly com­mit­ted to multidesti­nation, a vi­sion that does away with the be­lief of tra­vel des­ti­na­tions in­di­vi­dually wor­king on their own whe­re each and every one of them vies for its own mar­ket sha­re.

Ma­ke no mis­ta­kes about it; the be­ne­fits are great, but the­re is still a long way to go in terms of ha­ving vi­sa wai­vers and rel­ying on far mo­re air­lift among coun­tries and re­gions. It is vi­tal, among many ot­her ac­tions, to bring tra­vel bu­si­ness­peo­ple and aut­ho­ri­ties clo­ser to­get­her in a bid to ea­se tra­vel, fos­ter bet­ter ne­go­tia­tions with sup­pliers (ho­tels, air­li­nes, ca­rriers, etc.), beef up the qua­lity of ser­vi­ces lin­ked to this sec­tor, and, at the same ti­me, map out products and routes to­get­her.

It will be very use­ful to count on the pro­mo­tio­nal ca­pa­city that tra­vel agen­cies and tour ope­ra­tors ha­ve when it co­mes to se­lling the beauty that tells La­tin Ame­ri­ca and the Ca­rib­bean apart, who­se coun­tries boast in their hands the oppor­tu­nity to be­co­me a tra­vel des­ti­na­tion par ex­ce­llen­ce.

La ma­yo­ría de los tu­ris­tas que se em­bar­can en cru­ce­ros por el Ca­ri­be an­dan de­trás de sus pla­yas pa­di­sia­cas. Most tou­rists that hop on Ca­rib­bean-bound crui­ses are de­fi­ni­tely after its pa­ra­di­sia­cal bea­ches.

La cul­tu­ra y las tra­di­cio­nes es­tán en­tre los atrac­ti­vos principale­s de la re­gión. Cul­tu­re and tra­di­tions rank among the re­gion's top allu­res.

Cu­ba y Re­pú­bli­ca Do­mi­ni­ca­na han pues­to en prác­ti­ca ac­cio­nes co­mu­nes pa­ra acer­car al im­por­tan­te mer­ca­do chino. Cu­ba y Re­pú­bli­ca Do­mi­ni­ca­na han pues­to en prác­ti­ca ac­cio­nes co­mu­nes pa­ra acer­car al im­por­tan­te mer­ca­do chino.

Siem­pre se­rá mo­ti­va­dor via­jar has­ta la ciu­dad in­ca de Ma­chu Pic­chu. It will al­ways be en­cou­ra­ging to tra­vel to the In­ca city of Ma­chu Pic­chu.

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