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Nov 25, 2021

Tourist High Season Revenues Projected to Near Pre-COVID 2019 Levels

American Thanksgiving usually marks the unofficial start of the tourist high season which runs through January. This year, tourism stakeholders are beginning to see their bookings go up. But protecting that revenue stream means there has to be collaboration to minimize COVID numbers. And that ever sensitive issue that also has a bearing on our image internationally – crime. New Five’s Marion Ali has a report on the outlook for the new tourism season.


Marion Ali, Reporting

Tourism stakeholders and hoteliers have begun to see a significant increase in their bookings with the advent of the high season. From now and for the next three months, tourism activity is expected to be busier than it was – at least over the past year. With both overnight and cruise tourism seeing additional calls to our points of entry, Belize is poised to once again draw a significantly high amount of tourists to our shores, well before the previous projection for this to happen.


Stewart Krohn, President, B.T.I.A.

Stewart Krohn

“If you can recall, Marion, when the pandemic first hit in March 2020, the predictions at that time as to when the global tourism industry would start to return to its 2019 pre-pandemic levels, people were saying things like – the majority of the opinion was that – we would not see a recovery until sometime in 2023. I think certainly in the Caribbean, and more so for Belize, it looks like the coming high season should be if not back to 2019 levels, it should be very close.”


President of the Belize Tourism Industry Association, Stewart Krohn told News Five that while the visitor traffic and occupancy might be high, the actual revenues derived from those might not be as good because of all the discounts and specials that have been offered to attract people back. And while that may be the case, CEO in the Ministry of Tourism, Nicole Solano says there is the continuous effort to push Belize’s tourism product in new markets.


Nicole Solano

Nicole Solano, CEO, Ministry of Tourism

“We expect that we will be able to handle additional travelers in the high season and the hotels and tour operators are already indicating that they’re seeing an increase in the number of bookings. So we do expect to have a good high season. We’re being very optimistic – this is assuming that we don’t have any additional outbreak or there are no surprises with COVID -if things continue in the vein that they are, and if the numbers continue to be reduced and we don’t see any additional variants appear or any surprises, then we expect that by next year, we would be able to see quite a significant return to pre-pandemic levels.”


While Belizeans strive to ensure visitor safety and protection from COVID, Solano says that the industry also needs to make Belize a safe haven for visitors.”


Nicole Solano

“Thankfully, Marion, in the tourism industry, there is not a prevalence of crime against tourists. It is something that is a priority for us in the tourism industry and we have very close collaboration with the Tourism Police Unit to ensure that officers are on the ground, especially in the high season when an increasing number of tourists in country. So, there is going to be an increase in the number of officers deployed within the areas of the country that have the highest concentration of tourists.”


Marion Ali reporting for News Five.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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