New figures from the Jamaica Tourist Board show an 11 percent increase in November 2010 UK visitor arrival numbers equating to an impressive 16,441 tourists travelling to the island overall, compared to 14,806 in 2009, bringing the total number of visitors during 2010 to 167,366.
The rise in figures can be attributed to several reasons, including the sustained marketing efforts of the Jamaica Tourist Board in the UK and crucial ongoing support from its agents and tour operator partners. In addition, the island has implemented a number of significant improvements to its infrastructure, namely the recently constructed shipping port at Falmouth. The new cruise terminal, aptly named the ‘Historic Falmouth Port, has been built to impressively allow two megaliners to berth simultaneously with Royal Caribbean’s 5,400-passenger ship arriving at the dock during the official opening on 22nd March.
Elizabeth Fox, Regional Director of Jamaica Tourist Board in UK and Northern Europe, said: “Even with the recession and hard economic times, the latest figures show that Jamaica is bucking the trend and is as popular as ever. What is reassuring is that we have already seen a 13% increase in August 2010 UK visitor arrival numbers, a record high since August 2006, as well as an 11% increase from Ireland. They also help support that we really do have the best product offering in the Caribbean; our new and improved infrastructure, airports, roads to major resorts and hotels all play a part in these results.
“Perhaps even more paramount to this successful growth is the strong and indeed special relationship that we have with our agents, as ultimately it is them that sell our product offering to the consumer. As such and to show our commitment and gratitude, moving forward in 2011 we will continue to work closely with them in a number of ways such as conducting a series of road-shows, FAM trips and consistently provide them with innovative and current sales techniques.
“In conclusion, when taking all of these positives into account, plus the significant rise in November visitor figures, I feel hopeful that Jamaica will continue to see a growth in visitor numbers during 2011.”
The UK and Ireland are two of Jamaica’s most important long haul markets, representing over 10% per cent of total visitation.