Jamaica’s tourist board revealed plans to reach up to 250,000 UK visitors per year by 2020 at the first agent showcase promoting the beautiful Caribbean island to UK trade.
Jamaica Travel Market is a dedicated event attracting more than 200 delegates including agents, tour operators and Jamaican suppliers.
The UK is Jamaica's 3rd-biggest source market, and in 2015 saw a record figure of 201,364 UK visitors, but this is expected to rise with additional airlift and accommodation. Thomson has added a 3rd weekly flight from Manchester and a 4th from London Gatwick running November-April, with a Stansted service coming in May, while British Airways’ fourth weekly Gatwick-Kingston flight starts next April.
Paul Pennicook, Director of tourism, said:
“We’re about to open another 2,000 rooms between now and early next year and we’re up to more than 200,000 visitors from the UK last year, so with those things coming together, we thought it was the right time to have our own show.
“We are certainly hoping agents will leave more educated about Jamaica, and therefore be able to sell with more confidence. Our minister is aiming to get to 250,000 visitors by 2020, and as long as we can continue to increase the airlift and the access, it’s achievable.
Among the island’s hotel developments, AMResorts’ 150-room Breathless Montego Bay is expected to be completed by December; Coyaba Beach Resort will reopen under the Zoetry brand in November; Sandals Royal Caribbean is opening over-water suites next month; and Couples Tower Isle has added eight luxury spa villa suites.