Tourism Industry News
Jamaica Offers Agent Fams to Counter Potential Tourism Drop
The Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) is set to bring 3,000 travel agents to the island in a series of fam trips that will take place throughout June and then later this fall as one of several initiatives planned to counter any potential tourism downturn due to the recent violence in Kingston. The fam trips will start this month, but stop in July and August because airlines are full.
The balance of the 3,000 agent fams will be completed in the fall. Roughly 73 people were killed in Jamaica’s capital when the government attempted to capture alleged drug and weapons dealer Christopher Coke. But tourism officials stress that Kingston is not near any major resort areas for the island and so far the impact on tourism has been minimal.
Nevertheless, the bad publicity surrounding the incident has affected tourism to some degree. John Lynch, director of tourism for the JTB, estimated that cancelled hotel bookings since last week’s violence in Kingston number around 300. “We have had very few cancellations in terms of the number of major resort area hotel rooms we have in Jamaica,” Lynch said. “What is unfathomable is the number of people who want to book but are not because of this news.”
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