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Carib’n tourist arrivals could see 20% increase in 2021

Carib’n tourist arrivals could see 20% increase in 2021

Amid reports that Caribbean tourism declined by 65.5 per cent in 2020, the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) said it is forecasting a 20 per cent rise in arrivals in 2021.

The organisation said this is an initial forecast that will depend largely on countries’ ability to control the virus.

“Already, there are some encouraging signs like the vaccine roll-out taking place in North America, Europe and the Caribbean,” the CTO said.

However, the organisation said expectations for visitor arrivals must be tempered by some other factors such as:

* lockdowns in countries from which tourists travel. (This is expected to continue into the second quarter of 2021)

* international travel confidence not expected to pick up until summer 2021

* a steep fall in the number of people planning to travel abroad

* the possible requirement by the authorities in our key markets for their citizens to vaccinate before travelling abroad.

The CTO said all these factors could affect visitor arrivals in the Caribbean region.

As for the BVI, tourism arrivals have been particularly affected by the closure of the seaports — the main point of entry for tourists in the territory’s yachting sector.

Just recently, Chairman of the BVI Marine Association, Andrew Ball confirmed that multiple local charter companies have sailed their boats to “bluer waters” in a bid to stop financial haemorrhaging.

Residents, however, recently received a bit of welcomed news that the BVI will be accepting cruise ships with vaccinated passengers and crew come June.

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