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Feb 18, 2015

Belizean Tour Operators Tom and Ivette Wilson Honored by Carnival Cruise Lines

Belize has been gaining recognition worldwide as a top tourist destination. Well tonight, there is one more to add as the leading tour operator for the Caribbean hails from Belize. Carnival Cruise Lines has selected H2O-Tierra Ltd, owned by Tom and Ivette Wilson as the top tour operator in the countries where the cruise lines calls on port. The Wilsons were rated for best customer service, innovation, professionalism and communication. The couple was honoured today on board Carnival Cruise Lines and the media was present for the occasion. Duane Moody reports.

 

Duane Moody, Reporting

H2O Tierra Belize is the Leading Tour Operator in the region. Today on board the Carnival Glory, representatives of the local aquatic and terrestrial tour company were honored for the first award program for the cruise line. The award is a part of Carnival Cruise Lines Tour Operation “Tour Operator Award Program.”

 

Caroline Walendowsky

Caroline Walendowsky, Short Schedule Manager, Carnival Glory

“It’s the first year that Carnival is giving this award for the tour operators which involves all the Caribbean tour operators, Alaska, Pacific Coast…all the places where we are calling. Here in Belize, H2O was the one that were chosen based on the feedback from the guests as well as the short schedule manager on board feedback and our short site personnel. It involves innovation, it involves professionalism, communication. We rated this between all our tour operators and they were the ones chosen because they do a really good job and we want to make sure they know that.”

 

The award highlights the top-rated tour operators in the Caribbean who have the best overall performance, best customer service, are the most innovative, have the best ratings and the best quality. For the owner of H2O Tierra Belize, Thomas Wilson, hard work is paying off.

 

Thomas Wilson

Thomas Wilson, Owner, H2O Tierra Belize

“We’ve all as a team worked very hard. We try to train everyone to proper standards; to do our jobs the same way every day. One of the most important things in this business is to keep your guests happy and we all strive to do that and by doing so, we have to give them a lot of love and that’s what keep them coming back. It is team effort; we have a wonderful set of workers that have been with H2O Tierra since the company was formed and we will continue to grow…God willing, and we are just proud to be able to accept this award really for the entire country of Belize.”

 

Duane Moody

“Tell us about the experience that H2O Tierra offers to these tourists.”

 

Thomas Wilson

“Well we are primarily an adventure tour operator. Our very first tour here was in 2003 with airboats and we’ve grown from that into a number of different tours, adventure tours primarily. Our new tour company, H2O Tierra, has started primarily on the marine side offering sharks and rays encounters with the animals out on Caye Caulker and it’s been a very popular tour and continues to gain popularity.”

 

Valdemar Andrade

Valdemar Andrade, the Director of Cruise and Regional Operations for the Belize Tourism Board, says that the private and the public sectors have been working together to ensure the viability of the cruise tourism industry.

 

Valdemar Andrade, Director of Cruise & Regional Operations, B.T.B.

“It’s not only B.T.B.; the cruise tourism industry and the tourism industry is a partnership between the private sector and the public sector agencies. We try to support. Of course this is a lot about the Belize brand. It also says a lot about the tour operator itself. They have obviously put in a lot of time, a lot of effort; its staff has put its boots on the ground firmly. They have made the offer to the client as best as they can and now like you said, they will have to raise the bar. For us, it is a very significant award because Carnival one of our, the biggest clients in terms of they come all year around. And so for this to be said to a tour operator that they are the best, it’s where we want to get all our tour operators doing. So we hope that all of our tour operators aspire to be at this level, to offer at this level.”

 

According to Andrade, the B.T.B. is looking at expanding the range of tours offered to tourists.

 

Valdemar Andrade

“Belize…we are working with the operators to offer a greater variety, both marine, terrestrial…to be innovative. As they said we have to innovate. We also have to get some tours that are closer to sure because a lot of our tours are far away and so we are looking at working with the Belize City port area to see how we can get tours that are closer to sure and work with those operators to ensure that we have new offers for 2016, new offers for 2017. So that we need to keep reinventing ourselves, ensuring that we are supporting the Belize brand and the Belize tourism product.”

 

Duane Moody for News Five.

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