Along with all the other problems facing the worldwide tourism industry, it seems to have been the year of the travel warning.
First Bangkok and Athens experienced rioting in the streets. Then it was the turn of Jamaica to count the cost to tourism (projected at $350 million /£240 million) of clashes in Kingston between police and protesters trying to prevent an alleged drug dealer from being extradited to the US.
With the situation now calm, the Ministry of Tourism and the Jamaican Tourist Board have organised a campaign to assure potential visitors that the island is open for business and remains a safe travel destination.
The particular targets for the advertising blitz are the US, Canada and the UK, all of whom had issued travel warnings to their citizens at the height of the trouble. The US alone accounts for some 65 per cent of tourists visiting Jamaica.
Travel and tourism make up a quarter of Jamaica’s gross domestic product, according to the World Travel & Tourism Council. It’s thought it could take between nine and 12 months to restore normality to the sector.
by Andy Moreton
It could be a good time to pick up a deal at a luxury hotel in Jamaica. Take a look at Luxique’s selection in Montego Bay and St Andrew.