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Apr 14, 2016

B.T.B. Says Quarterly Tourist Arrivals are Up in 2016

The B.T.B. is forecasting that it will be reaching the million mark number of cruise tourism visitors to the jewel this year. It has already contracted the Brighter Group firm of the UK to promote Belize in Europe and specifically in the UK. In the first quarter of this year, January to March, overnight visitors increased significantly. But while that is the good news, cruise tourism numbers are not as impressive. News Five’s Duane Moody reports.

 

Duane Moody, Reporting

Belize is trending as a tourism destination in the world; that is the message that the Belize Tourism Board, the marketing arm of the tourism ministry, is asserting given the statistics for tourist arrivals for the first quarter of 2016. The B.T.B. says that the numbers are impressive because for January and February, there was an increase in overnight visitors by twenty-four and eighteen point four percent respectively over 2015.

 

Noriko Gamero

Noriko Gamero, Marketing and PR Manager, B.T.B.

“This first quarter in the tourism industry showed remarkable numbers; just to continue proving that Belize is trending internationally and the numbers are showing it. We are very happy to show that January had an increase of twenty-four percent and February’s increase of eighteen point four percent. Historically, the first two months for the year has never exceeded seventy-five thousand passengers collectively, but this year it did. We’ve seen ten months consecutively of increase in our numbers. We know that we have been changing our strategies a lot this year in our marketing. So we are definitely looking more at the analytics; we are looking at the numbers. We are trying to be more strategic. So for example we’ll have partnerships with American Airlines where they brought their road warriors winners to Belize which gave us like a nine-month consecutive exposure on all the American Way magazines. It had in flight videos of the winners coming to Belize so the videos were on all the back of the plane seats for the entire month of March. We have also been strategic in bringing international press coverage that would write articles on Belize; the social influencers that take pictures and do a lot more videos and then in addition to that, our stakeholders have been playing a very adamant role in getting the exposure of Belize.”

 

The overall number of tourists visiting the Jewel increased for the first three months of this year; the month of March registering the lowest percentage increase with only ten percent over 2015. But there is still reason to celebrate, says Marketing and PR Manager, Noriko Gamero because it’s a historic number of arrivals.

 

Noriko Gamero

“March didn’t fail us. March increased by ten percent which is usually the peak of our tourism season and this increased by a historic forty-three thousand sixty-three passengers, which never in history has any month every exceeded forty thousand passengers. So we are very excited with those numbers. As a result of that, we’ve seen increase in international TV shows; we’ve seen celebrities like Andrew Zimmerman was here; Paul Logan was here. We have been named in Trip Advisor Ambergris Caye and San Ignacio was named topped destinations. So we’ve seen Belize being named internationally and we can see the results of it.”

 

All was not good in terms of cruise arrivals; there was an initial decrease of nineteen point five percent in January due to fewer calls to port, when compared to 2015. But Gamero says that the projection is that the country will meet the one million cruise visitor threshold by the end of 2016.

 

Noriko Gamero

“That was expected, but February and March saw the increase with three point seven and four point one respectively over 2015. We know that in the cruise industry we are projecting to hit the one million by the end of the year as we are very hopeful for this industry as well.”

 

Duane Moody for News Five.

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2 Responses for “B.T.B. Says Quarterly Tourist Arrivals are Up in 2016”

  1. Juniore Guerra says:

    It is nice to hear that Tourism is booming Belize, but yet the UDP government will not spend a penny on the country’s infrastructure. I have been to Belize twice these past years and the Streets in Western town of Benque Viejo and Cayo are a mess. They are like dirt roads. How embarrassing.
    Benque had nicer paved streets back in the 80′s. I can’t believe that instead of looking better, it actually looks worst than 30 years ago. Belize City is also a mess and still looks very Third World. . Why do Belizeans keep voting for this UDP Goverment? why???

  2. Juniore Guerra says:

    Benque Viejo and Cayo will be seen in a popular show in the US called “The Shahs of Sunset”. Let’s hope they did not shoot too many scenes out on the streets. The conditions of the streets will make Belize look really bad.

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