The US Virgin Islands Department of Tourism has expressed an interest in collaborating with Jamaica on tourism-enhancing initiatives.
Both countries are interested in partnering in the area of tourism as their local tourism businesses rebound from the adverse impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Speaking in the wake of a recent visit to Jamaica, where he met with public and private sector tourism stakeholders, US Virgin Islands Commissioner of Tourism, Joseph Boschulte is adamant about forging a partnership with Jamaica on tourism cooperation.
While in Jamaica, Boschulte met with Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett, with whom he had “fruitful” talks on tourism collaboration. He also spoke with other private sector officials about the potential for regional economic revitalisation with the unleashing of pent-up tourism demand.
Both Boschulte and Bartlett affirmed the need for cooperation
Part and parcel of the recovery, Boschulte affirmed, will be embracing “coopetition”, a concept Bartlett supports.
According to Boschulte, “the Caribbean is the most desirable warm weather destination, and we know how to deliver world-class experiences for our discerning guests.”
He posited the view that cooperation on tourism is the way to go for the region arguing the importance of connecting the best brains across the region to advance Caribbean brand marketing in the global marketplace. Boschulte and Bartlett agreed about the need to leverage the strengths of regional destinations to overcome any weaknesses and both observed trends that had emerged over the past 15 months.
These include trends such as the loyalty and resilience of urban African American professionals, who have been key to the travel recovery in both destinations.
“Regional collaboration is important to our success, and we must continue to share best practices, especially as they relate to public health safety protocols even as the traveling community becomes vaccinated,” Boschulte said.
Although summer bookings to the USVI are robust, the Department of Tourism continues to push forward on its marketing and promotional initiatives.
“Even with this strong demand, we need to go to market and make the case that we can compete with the rest of the world any day, any week, any month of the year,” the commissioner explained.