Barbados Tourism: Plan Versus Actual

Adrian Loveridge - Hotelier

Adrian Loveridge – Hotelier

When you read emotive statements such as ‘In two months we would have reached the enviable target of over one billion earned impressions on our digital properties supporting brand Barbados’  perhaps you cannot fail to be left in a condition of being awestruck. But then, reflecting on the words, what does this actually mean and how does it impact on our current tourism performance.

It is quickly realised that while the less informed may get blown away with the flowery phraseology, certainly in the last seventeen consecutive months, it has not had any positive effective on driving increased long stay visitor arrivals.

We are also in the third year of the quoted multi million marketing arrangement with superstar Rihanna and ten months since her long delayed campaign video has been aired. When I last checked YouTube it had received over 450,000 views. On reflection, at least the inclusion of a ‘call to action’ or proven method of monitoring the level of booked holiday conversion ratio would have demonstrated any cost-effectiveness. Surely, by now, we should have started to see some sort of return on ‘our’ investment?

Other promotions like the $11 million Barbados Island Inclusive initiative have clearly not made up for the dramatic decline.  This now stands at over 61,100 ‘lost’ long stay visitors from April 2012 until August 2013. September tourism figures this year, have yet to be disclosed, but indications point to the continuation of a dismal performance.

Yes! we know that ongoing national tourism policy direction is largely led by Government agencies but if the same scenario was being experienced by a private sector company or corporation, how much longer could it afford to go on losing market share month after month. While those in control of directing our tourism industry continue to function in a flagrant state of denial, it is very difficult to know, if this persists, what more can be done to address the crisis.

The facts speak for themselves. In 2012, of the 25 reporting Caribbean Tourism Organisation members, 19 reported positive stop-over growth. 4 recorded a fall of 1.8 per cent or less and only one, Grenada, approached anything like the 5.5 per cent fall experienced by Barbados. Simply put, of the 25 countries submitting their arrival data, Barbados had the worse performance. Yet right up until a few days ago, the media is quoting excuses like ‘some destinations may argue have seen growth, but usually they are emerging destinations which results will reflect, but they are not a mature destination such as Barbados’.

This continued facade of delusion must concern us all, and the longer we go on denying there is a problem, the path to recovery becomes more arduous and prolonged. After all, what other practical choice do we currently have?

Barbadian tourism marketing prowess used to be the envy of most of our regional neighbours. Nowadays, ‘we’ have almost become the laughing stock in the Caribbean when plan after plan are proclaimed publicly, then months and sometimes years later, the majority fail to materialise in reality.

86 thoughts on “Barbados Tourism: Plan Versus Actual

  1. The several tourism articles from Adrian Loveridge make sense and hit the nail on the head. Unfortunately in Barbados we seem to shoot the messenger instead of listening to the message. The attitude “who he tink he is” supersedes the content of the message which may be given with a good heart.

    I do not think that Adrian wants to show up the continuous inefficiency of the BTA and the MOT but, as someone with a stake hold in tourism one can understand his frustration to the ineffectiveness of subsequent marketing campaigns that do nothing to put people in seats/beds.

    Barbados Underground recently called for the resignation of the Minister of Tourism. In my opinion, they did not go far enough. The UK office needs a shake up. The Director of Europe has been there too long and needs to be transferred. The UK needs new blood in this position and someone with a clear vision and creative thinking. The same for Europe which needs a new business strategy.

    One of the problems with this blog is that it is mostly read by persons living outside of Barbados and not by those resident in Barbados. If more Bajans read and submitted to this blog, then there would be more action and less babble.

  2. If successive Barbados governments were to tie postings to exotic, tourism and trade marketing offices to a performance index of some measurable type, we would not have this lackadaisical underperformance that we are besieged by.

    But we continue to share the fatted calf among the incompetents of current and past administrations unable to apply jeyes fluid to the hide of the calf and remove the ticks that infest its body.

    “The captain stoically going down with his ship…nope causing Sinckliar and Buhkun** Sealy with the fixated look getting rich and fat, at the expense of the nation.

    Lowe’s untimely passing or 2018, either which way and the DLP will be in the wilderness for 20 years, AT LEAST.

  3. @Andrew. Well said. I agree that Bajans abroad are the voice of reason on this blog. The on island contributors, generally, seem to focus on petty issues of political party affiliations and parochial school ties. The country is in a serious crisis. It boggles the mind that the incompetence of Barbados’ “leaders” is not only tolerated but glossed over with the lies of meaningless sound bites and empty promises mumbled by ignorant, uneducated, out of their depth morons. The pompous BTA idiots confusing meaningless Facebook “likes” with tourism dollars indeed need to be replaced. Like the imported JUDGE, the only skill sets they seem to possess are chewing with their mouths open at never-ending cocktail parties. As simple as it sounds, all Barbados needs to do is provide value in order to attract visitors. And stop wasting tax payer money!

    • Here is another example why the country remains in a state of perpetual confusion. In the news today we read that six drug suppliers have cut supplies to the QEH because the government is not paying its bills. Accumulation of 29 million dollars. Bear in mind minister Boyce has assured the public there is nothing to worry about. Now where is the confidence going to come from if information being disseminated is inconsistent.

  4. Now we know why Carson is keeping a low profile, i am sure they are all (the politician/lawyers and their respective yardfowls) feeling like a weight has been lifted off their shoulders with all the incompetence, neglect and down right lies consistently being told now actually coming to light nearly every day for everyone to see, hear and disseminate………..they may not realize it nor appreciate it for that matter, but they are sure to feel better and sleep better at night, now it is time to do the people’s work cause they are still getting a salary and there remains the cleanup after all that damage and total destruction to the island.

  5. @ Well Well david

    Let Carson be…..where is our leader PM Stuart in all this? Such an important decision has been put forward and laymen who are not as well educated as you Well Well…. (The QEH is another matter) need a reassuring word from our leader..But we dun know what we all know…

    • Update on the QEH matter.

      Government gave 2.6 million last week.

      How does this match up with minister Boyce’s announcement after the budget that a budget cut of 35 million will not negatively impact healthcare delivery.

  6. “In two months we would have reached the ENVIABLE TARGET of over one billion EARNED impressions on our digital properties supporting brand Barbados”

    If I “one of the ignorant, uneducated, out of their depth morons” who does not live overseas and does not consequently have the stamp of approval of “Philofficer” might rise above my lowly place and provide some comment on this statement.

    Let us analyze this emotive statement spoken but the dimwit Sealy.

    1. I would first ask “who is this target envied by?”

    Is it that there is some cyberspace polling crew that upon one attaining 1B likes will, like Thomas Publishing House, come to your doorstep, in this case our 144 sq. mile rock in the sea, and give us 10 cents for every hit we achieved?

    2. EARN(ED). verb (of a person) obtain (money) in return for labor or services as in “they earn $35 per hour”, synonyms: be paid, take home, gross, net; (copied from a google search)

    So if I “ignorant, out of my depth, landed, commenter” that I am am to extrapolate it would appear that, in exchange for some as yet undefined “work or labour” we have EARNED the “digital impressions for some other lotta long talk” that I, bereft as i am of any learning, (since i am from the Rock and not from overseas) overseas.

    Dogshite by any other name is still dogshite and while “Philofficer” might like to wash this down with his statement about “politically complexioned remarks interwoven with the commentary of submissions”, I, for one, will say that, on both sides of the House, we are swamped, for the most parts, by incompetents who, whether he or any other interloper from over and away will accept it, form the gene pool of representatives that we are being offered every five years.

    Dont get confused, you cannot make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear is an irrefutable statement of perennial truth and Sealy, in proffering this Tourism Plan shows how much percy the pig he has in his nature

  7. If we were to judge by the exuberance displayed by Minister Sealy as he spoke to the launch of Couples,we should have a warm and fuzzy if not peachy feeling about our tourism product.The numbers however tell a different,very different story.As an honorable minister he surely would never lie to us.Mr.Minister you are just a clueless clown in a circus cabinet. This road show has gotten to the point where it is no longer funny.One of your constituents Mr.Minister was quoted a price of $1,000.00 for much needed medication that the QEH does not have.Should he just lay at home and wait to die?

  8. I always felt that more emphasis should have been placed on the $35 million cut from the QEH. This cut would certainly present fundamental problems to the health of our nation.

    I heard directly from a nurse at the hospital that supplies were so low that they were being told to reuse gloves. Now this is scary……the lowest of the low that we can ever go. Can you imagine what far reaching consequences this practice would have on patients?

    This government was warned. It refused to take heed. They thought they knew it all and now we all have to pay for their arrogance and incompetence.

    Added to our problems on the ground, the MOF and his sidekick the governor went away begging and came back empty handed. Woe is we!

  9. old onion bags | October 7, 2013 at 12:13 PM |

    @ Well Well david

    Let Carson be…..where is our leader PM Stuart in all this? Such an important decision has been put forward……………

    Onions……………I asked about the PM a couple days ago, Stuart is acting like he is his own boss and is not accountable to the taxpayers, this is the time for him to show leadership, obviously that is not his forte.

  10. Piece……….i heard the nonsense Sealy was spouting and wondered myself what digital impressions have to do with the price of rice, flour, bread, etc……….don’t even need to go to school to figure that one out.

  11. Prodigal says…”Now this is scary……the lowest of the low that we can ever go. Can you imagine what far reaching consequences this practice would have on patients?”

    So we are building a new cruise terminal, buying Almond Village, breaking it down and rebuilding it, funding four seasons, building a new hospital, and yet we can’t buy drugs for the hospital? This same hospital that the Tourist does go to? Wait till they get back to their country and tell the press about it. And dem always accusing the tourist of bad mouthing Barbados.

  12. @David
    List of names in yesterdays Nation of the persons, companies self employed etc owing NIS; amount $200 million. Land Tax due $…million dollars. Vat due to the government… million dollars Total accounts receivable….how many hundred million? In order for the government to pay its bills it must have the revenue coming in. not necessarily foreign exchange alone but those owing government have to pay. When all is said and done you will probably find that accounts receivable exceed accounts payable.

  13. @ PhilOfficer
    “The country is in a serious crisis. It boggles the mind that the incompetence of Barbados’ “leaders” is not only tolerated but glossed over with the lies of meaningless sound bites and empty promises mumbled by ignorant, uneducated, out of their depth morons”
    This, Sir, is what brass bowls do…..

  14. Alvin,
    please answer this question. WHY would any Government appoint Senators and Directors to statutory corporations who owe NIS.

  15. The damn Government should be shame as shiite.

    Wuh if they run the police, army, courts, marshals, DPP, SSA and PCP who the hell do they expect to collect this outstanding money…?
    Brass bowls!!!

    It is only little old widows that run to the newspapers to name and shame. ….woe betide any fellow who owe Bushie for a small pack of bush……far less the damn government….!

    Robinson and his band of jokers should all resign now or be laughed out of office.
    Bunch of brass bowls…..

  16. i guest they had to pay to publish the ad with the defaulters — could have sent the couple dollars to the hospital

  17. Couple things I see going wrong here. I might be out of league but this is how I see it.

    It seems as if the Tourism Ministry has hinged its earning power and arrivals numbers on the Crop Over Festival and on estimated Winter arrivals. We really do not boast anything separate, distinct, unique that other destinations do not have. Sea and sand is very common, trust me when you are on a budget who cares if the sand is white or grey.

    We seemed to have hung our hats on the pulling power of Rhianna, it is evident – then and now that there really is no “pulling power” to pull long term and repeat visitors. The trouble is every time you say something about this cock up, whether verbally or written people get their panties in a knot instead of reviewing the entire product and looking at the issue objectively. The little air heads that buy Rhianna’s albums don’t have a poe to piss in or a window to throw it through and ain’t going to spend a dime to come see nothing Barbados has – which is very little by the way.

    Our marketing is poor because the truth has settled in, there is nothing new to see here folks move along. The people in charge of the marketing themselves are stuck in a rut, because they only attend the conferences and away trips for their fun and not to gather information and ideas to implement and lift the offerings.
    The product has not been updated, modernised, no new concepts have been put on the table, even the hotel and their service is dull and lacklustre. Who wants to eat rice and Macaroni pie all the time, there is no casual dining except for BBQ Barn – waste of time. Our indigenous things that should packaged to appeal to tourist and local alike have been trampled in the ground. Not everyone want drugs, sex and rum.

    Lastly, our natural human resource, have become surly, unethical, unmannerly, narrow sighted, and largely unaware of what is going on around them unless it on a fete poster, a BBM or FB. They don’t even follow trends and markets, or even improve themselves if only by learning manners and common sense.

    Our pride and arrogance has gotten the best of us, and pride and Industry has taken flight. We are slowly become a nation of beggars and thieves and it will not auger well for the Tourism product.

  18. @ Alvin Cummings…while this administration did not put this country in the briar patch all by itself,there comes a time when the finger pointing and the making of excuses just have to be substituted for pragmatic decision making as was promised by those to whom we gave the reigns of leadership.How much longer must we endure the line of “blame it on the last fourteen years?”As much as one may love this party,how do you with a clear conscience offer defense in the face of all that has gone on?

  19. So Barbados has finally gone to the IMF. This according to Mia Mottley on VOB’s 5:30 pm news cast. If that is true, we Bajans up shite street. Look at Jamaica, , Guyana and Haiti devaluation, crime , lay offs in the public sector etc……………….

  20. @David 6:57
    I see it has been made official. How long before you think the MoT or chairman of the BTA will make a statement?

    Just Observing

    • @Observing (…)

      We need to change bowlers, the batsmen have become use to the line and length of Sealy.

  21. How many times have commenters on this blog been cussed, castigated and verbally castrated for pointing out the inevitable, maybe now they will just get on with actually managing the country and not continue the childish behavior of assigning blame and pointing fingers at something from damn near 20 years ago that actually has no bearing on this current ‘recession’, the recession of the 90s bears absolutely no resemblance to the current meltdown and any minister trying to compare the 90s with 2013 should just resign and stick to porn.

  22. Hey Piece,
    No offense intended toward the BU contributors. I was pointing fingers at the bumbling leaders. No money for RX drugs, no busses, now no planes want to fly into BIM. The shoite has hit the fan. And, De rock is 166 sq miles, yuh unnastan.

  23. “Great resort. Very accomodating after our St. Lucia debacle.”
    We were set to go to St. Lucia for our honeymoon. We have never ran into passport restrictions and our travel agency failed to mention anything about St. Lucia. Unfortunately, my passport was set to expire in 5 months and wasn’t allowed in to St. Lucia. We quickly booked a flight to Barbados and Sandy Lane and made our honeymoon amazing. 5 stars across the board.

  24. Warrior …….your second paragraph – yes.

    Mr Loveridge, who, yes, is to be applauded for his fortitude, is on record as saying that he wishes to see Bim as the ‘Switzerland of the Caribbean’ – a very strange analogy which may explain much. Perhaps he will here.


    Your remark about home grown products was unfortunate though I quite take the point that so much here is absurdly turned into a party political dog fight – and in this post too to a slight extent. I suppose the whole point about blogs is that they are licensed talk shops in which everyone thinks he knows better but not guaranteed to produce anything very much.

  25. what our investments do you speak of?????????
    what have you invested?just wondering.except the usual i am great know it all jackass writings of a crazy person living in a millionaires bubble.huh

  26. Rhianna.
    you mean that wuck up slut you know who buys her CD .
    i wish she would grow up but slut ,whore is the new ,decent lady.

  27. “… Unfortunately, my passport was set to expire in 5 months and wasn’t allowed into St. Lucia. We quickly booked a flight to Barbados….”
    St.Lucia displays confidence; and should be admired.

  28. The Rihanna debacle shows exactly what is wrong with the “thinking” in official tourism circle, or should I say “lack of thinking”. They have become so besotted with Rihanna’s fame that they could not even see the disconnect between those that follow and buy Rihanna’s music and the kind of tourist that is attracted to Barbados. Millions wasted, and now her latest music video is hardly going to show her, and by extension, Barbados, in a good light. Are they really so stupid as to think that the average middle aged potential visitor from the UK or Europe (ie the ones with the money) are going to be infuenced by Rihanna? It makes one despair at the incompetence.

  29. Also at the press conference were: Saint Lucia Deputy Commissioner in charge of crime operations, Joseph Eugene; Assistant Commissioner of Police in charge of crime (in the absence of DCP Frances Henry), Anastasius Mason; and Administrative Officer, Philomen St. Clair.

    The crime records presented by police this week made no reference to homicides as in previous years, but stuck to the crime of murder of which there was 37. Previous figures in 2012 showed 44 homicides – a total of killings found to be intentional and those still under investigation, including killings by the police.

    “We are not in the game of hiding any stats because at the end of the day the stats help us to move from one point to the next – it helps us to re-strategise our operations,” Acting Commissioner Alexander said. “We make available all the stats to the press when it is requested.”

    According to the just released 2012 statistics, there were 39 murder cases in 2011 and 44 in 2010.
    Keep the excuses coming CL.

  30. ‘one of the worse seasons on record’
    Wayne Capaldi – MD – Sandpiper Hotel and former twice term President of the BHTA.

  31. David,
    confirm that September 2013 had the LOWEST (26,996) long stay arrival numbers in that month for 11 years.

    • @Adrain

      How do you respond to Peter Wickham’s defense of minister Sealy on the talk show today? In summary that Barbados is a more matured product compared to other islands and therefore slower growth is not unreasonable.

  32. I hate to say it…….but ac… will only get out…what you put in…..and doan tell me mince meat…still left in the grinder….. A kind reminder, this is SHIFT # 2

  33. Onions……i can’t help believe that something has happened to Carson as well as PM Stuart………….a bajan female has been arrested in St. Lucia for alleged trafficking and still no sign of Carson to cuss St. Lucia………..that is not normal.

  34. David, I did not hear the show yesterday, but being a ‘mature destination’ is no argument at all in my view. If anything, it should give us an advantage.
    18 consecutive months of long stay visitor decline and the LOWEST arrivals numbers in ANY month during the last 11 years in September 2013.
    Something has to change.

  35. @ WAITING
    A couple of days ago you stated that Adrian should move to St.Lucia where 30 people have been killed so far this year. I asked you to substantiate that statistic, but all you are doing is to talk about 2011 & 2012.
    WAITING, you are unable to prove your 30 killings in 2013 because you made it up using fuzzy math.

  36. Taken from FACEBOOK:
    Loveridge is so intent on bad-mouthing the Barbados Tourist Industry that he appears to be writing without editing what he writes. His penultimate paragraph in the above ramblings states that Barbados marketing prowess was once the envy of most of its regional neighbours. I wonder to which country or countries he is referring. He can’t be talking about Bahamas, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Cuba , US Virgin Islands or Aruba because they were attracting larger numbers of tourists than Barbados for as long as the Caribbean became a tourist destination. Then he most probably is thinking about the other two countries Cancun and Dominican Republic which are recent-day tourist attractions. No other country in the region, although Barbados numbers are down, is performing better than Barbados in terms of long-stay visitors. Let us have a look at Cancun and the Dominican Republic , the two countries where tourism has been booming since 1974 and 1978 respectively. Once Cancun was developed for tourism, one would expect that with its beautiful beaches, proximity to the North America , tropical weather and rich Mayan history , Americans would flock there for their holidays. Does Loveridge expect Barbados to compete with them? And now to the Dominican Republic. Again it is the proximity to the United States that attracts the large numbers which now visit their shores. Added to that, its repeated devaluation of the peso, its 800 miles of beautiful beaches, countless aquatic activities make it heaven on earth for American, European and Canadian visitors. Loveridge, can you stop for one minute and think about why tourists from our original markets of Canada and the U.K prefer spend their money on a holiday in the Dominican Republic instead of Barbados where our currency is fixedd to the US dollar 2:1?
    Before you write your next column, I would suggest you read an article written by Neil Hartnell, Bahamas Tribune Newspaper business editor at url . I hope that when you finish , you would understand the meaning of being constructive, analytical and factual. Your plots are the same week after week i.e Barbados is doing worse than its neighbours in tourism. Another writer suggested that you do statistics classes. I would recommend that you read Shakespeare’s plays and learn to construct a different plot .

  37. Opposition women call on St Lucia national security minister to provide solutions

    Published on October 9, 2013

    CASTRIES, Saint Lucia — Women in Action (WIA), the women’s arm of the opposition United Workers Party (UWP) in Saint Lucia, said it has observed the “energy, enthusiasm and alacrity” with which the country’s minister for national security Phillip La Corbiniere has tackled the “new and riveting controversy” related to recent revelations by Caribbean News Now.

    “We further note the minister’s attempt to make local journalist Timothy Poleon and Radio Caribbean International (RCI) sacrificial lambs on the altar of media intimidation,” the WIA said in a statement.

    “In light of his new found energy and enthusiasm for justice,” the WIA requested the minister to redirect some of that energy and enthusiasm towards devising strategies TO RESOLVE THE NUMEROUS UNSOLVED MURDERS IN RECENT TIMES.(emphasis mine)This should include informing the nation of his ministry’s plans to restructure and adequately staff the Tapion Forensic Laboratory.

    The WIA said that the minister would be best placed at this time to convene a press conference to address the national concerns related to the spiraling crime situation rather than directing such venom at the media.

    “We urge the minister to remember the grieving families of TRICIA DENIS, GIZELLE GEORGES, PASCALINE BERTIN, VERLINDA JOSEPH, FELICIANA CHARLES, BERTHELIE MANGAL, ALISHA HUNTE, JOANNE COX, CHRISTEL FANIS and her UNBORN CHILD, as well as the most recent, CHEREECE BENOIT , so they too may look forward to some form of justice in the not too distant future,” the WIA said.

    The WIA said it has been expecting to hear La Corbiniere address the disturbing and rising levels of criminality in Saint Lucia society, and assure victims and the nation that he is putting every effort into improving the systems, processes and procedures to return stability to the national security environment.

    “Minister La Corbiniere must, therefore, tell Saint Lucia his plans to address the critical issues under his portfolio which are funded by the taxpayers of this country; such as, training and equipping the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force, the office of the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) and the Bordelais Correctional Facility with regards to identifying a properly trained and experienced successor when the present director retires. Other agencies that fall within the minister’s purview and are in urgent need of his attention are the Department of Probations, the Registry of Births, Marriages and Death, and the entire justice system, all of which appear comatose under the Hon. Minister’s watch,” the WIA concluded.

  38. This is really interesting:

    “We urge the minister to remember the grieving families of TRICIA DENIS, GIZELLE GEORGES, PASCALINE BERTIN, VERLINDA JOSEPH, FELICIANA CHARLES, BERTHELIE MANGAL, ALISHA HUNTE, JOANNE COX, CHRISTEL FANIS and her UNBORN CHILD, as well as the most recent, CHEREECE BENOIT , so they too may look forward to some form of justice in the not too distant future,” the WIA said.”

    Bajan disciples of ADRIAN lOVERIDGE such as DAVID, WELL WELL, Miller(uncle Tom) are willing to accept the murder of St. Lucian Citizens as nothing much while denigrating Barbados over a bag of garbage not removed on a timely basis.

    But here we see that St. Lucians are grieving and despondent over their murdered love ones.

    What kind of sick people these Barbados Labour Party members and supporters are?

  39. Those who were missing Carson, be careful what you wish for! Adrian talks about apples, Carson talks about tropical hardwoods. One sinister note – he mentions the Barbados Dollar being being at a disadvantage at 2:1 with the US$ compared with the DR etc. He’s never mentioned that before. Has he been away on briefing classes to help set us up for a devaluation?

  40. Caribbean Lover | October 9, 2013 at 6:12 AM |
    CIA Fact book: Saint Lucia ,Population162,781 (July 2013 est.)
    CL there are a disproportionately high number of homicides in small St. Lucia with a small population. Your focus ought to be curbing the high rate of killings instead of lying on Barbados which has about twice your island’s population with an average homicide rate of 18 – 20. I detest murders any where but you bad mouth Barbados and when Carson calls you out on the degradation in your backyard you lie or bring childish diversions.

  41. Peltdownman

    Lets face it; the Barbados dollar is overvalued.

    Under the Barbados Labour Party regime we were foolishly move to a “Service” economy. We decimated what manufacturing and Agricultural capacity there was on the Island.

    Now that the Tourists are not coming in their usual numbers because of the difficulty there they are facing in their own home territories we now see what a mistake a “Service” economy is.

    This is no surprise to me. I knew that it would happen. However some among us, ADRIAN LOVERIDGE included, can continue to flog a dead or dying horse.

  42. Most sensible bajans are aware of the mindless ,hateful, and insightful, inspid garbage *drien continues cto write . The few here on BU who agrees with him you can count on your fingers…. In todays advocate there is an article which brings to light more tourism decline for carribbean islands as the ongoing stalemate in america in regards to govt shutdown and its impacts on the Tourism industry…. for Adrien ignorance is bliss where fools would follow

  43. So am I wrong?

    18th consecutive months of long stay visitors decline.
    Lowest September long stay visitor arrivals in 11 years.

    As I mentioned before, we go on rewarding people for failure.

  44. Adrian Loveridge | October 9, 2013 at 4:15 AM |

    David, I did not hear the show yesterday, but being a ‘mature destination’ is no argument at all in my view. If anything, it should give us an advantage.

    18 consecutive months of long stay visitor decline and the LOWEST arrivals numbers in ANY month during the last 11 years in September 2013.

Something has to change.

    This is from:

    Marketing is the process of communicating the value of a product or service to customers for the purpose of selling the product or service. It is a critical business function for attracting customers.

    And this:

    Advertising or advertizing is a form of communication for marketing and used to encourage, persuade, or manipulate an audience (viewers, readers or listeners; sometimes a specific group) to continue or take some new action.

    DD is no marketing or advertising expert; but it seems to me that the virtual absence of advertising (in Canada at least) has to be a significant contributing factor to 18 consecutive months of long stay visitor decline and the LOWEST arrivals numbers in ANY month during the last 11 years in September 2013.

    On Saturday October 5 there were full page ads in the Travel section of the Globe and Mail for LeSport (The BodyHoliday) in Saint Lucia, and for one of the Sandals properties.

    Today, October 9, there is a half page joint Air Canada Vacations/St. Lucia Tourism ad featuring 8 properties (including 3 Sandals properties) in the Business section of the Toronto Star.

    These newspaper ads in the Globe and the Star for competing destinations appear at least weekly and often twice weekly as well as Westjet/St. Lucia ads.

    Since the start of 2013, there has been virtually no newspaper advertising in Toronto for Barbados properties.

    Given the absence of marketing/advertising, how could there not be 18 consecutive months of long stay visitor decline and the LOWEST arrivals numbers in ANY month during the last 11 years in September 2013.

    The MOF said in his budget speech that government would be funding BTA with $50 million, including $13 million to pay its payables, when it gets funding from a (to be negotiated) $100 million loan from IADB; so it is obvious that BTA has no money for advertising until it gets the money from AIDB to pay its existing payable

    The “something that has to change” is that the hoteliers, individually or collectively through BHTA, have to step up to fill that void left by BTA’s absence, to encourage, persuade, or manipulate past or new visitors to choose to vacation in Barbados.

    failure to do so will simply ensure that the downward spiral in long stay visitors will continue and accelerate; and in the words of CCC (who I hate to quote) the dying tourism horse will be dead.

      Oct. 9, 2013, 12:17 p.m. EDT
      JetBlue Increases Service to Barbados
      New York’s Hometown Airline Moves to Daily A321 Service –

      NEW YORK, Oct. 9, 2013 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ — JetBlue Airways JBLU +0.15% today announces a renewed commitment to Barbados, with plans to serve New York/JFK to Bridgetown, Barbados with daily Airbus A321 service, adding up to 580 seats per week each way, starting December 19, 2013. Additionally, JetBlue has filed to offer more capacity to Barbados during peak holiday times, including President’s Day and Easter, subject to receipt of government approval. Both the daily A321 flights and additional peak holiday flights are now available for sale on
      “JetBlue has been a trusted partner to Barbados since 2009, moving large numbers of visitors and members of the diaspora to our beautiful island!” said Adrian Elcock, Chairman of the Barbados Tourism Authority. “We are extremely excited to have reached an agreement with JetBlue to significantly increase their capacity to Barbados and we will continue to work aggressively with the expansive JetBlue network as part of our greater strategy of securing more arrivals from the United States.”
      “The people of Barbados and those who love to visit the island nation for work or pleasure can continue to rely on JetBlue for great service at a competitive fare,” said Robin Hayes, JetBlue’s chief commercial officer. “We have been warmly welcomed by the Barbadian community ever since we started service in 2009, and it is our honor to continue to meet the travel needs of this community.”
      JetBlue expects to meet peak winter holiday demand by deploying brand new A321 aircraft on the route starting December 19, 2013. These aircraft will be fresh from the Airbus factory and will not initially have LiveTV programming (television, movies or radio) available. As a new aircraft to the JetBlue fleet, the A321 must receive a supplemental type certificate from the Federal Aviation Administration before JetBlue can install and activate the airline’s signature entertainment on all A321s. The certification timeline may be impacted by the partial U.S. government shut down. JetBlue anticipates offering LiveTV’s full suite of entertainment on the first A321 aircraft by April 2014 (a). Per the airline’s policy, all customers on aircraft without functioning inflight entertainment will receive a $15 travel certificate credit per flight, valid for one year, to apply to future JetBlue travel.
      About JetBlue AirwaysAs New York’s Hometown Airline(TM) and a leading carrier in Boston, Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Los Angeles (Long Beach), Orlando and San Juan, JetBlue carries 29 million customers a year to 79 cities in the US, Caribbean and Latin America with more than 750 daily flights. With JetBlue, all seats are assigned, all fares are one-way, and an overnight stay is never required. JetBlue’s fleet totals 189 aircraft, comprising 130 Airbus A320s and 59 Embraer E190s. Upcoming destinations include Savannah, Ga.; Worcester, Mass.; Port-au-Prince, Haiti; Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago; and Lima, Peru, subject to receipt of government approval. For more information please visit
      (a) Live satellite TV and radio programming is not available on flights operating outside the continental U.S. Where applicable, JetBlue may offer complimentary JetBlue Features(TM) movies on these flights.
      SOURCE JetBlue Airways
      Copyright (C) 2013 PR Newswire. All rights reserved

  45. Peltdownman says:

    One sinister note – he mentions the Barbados Dollar being being at a disadvantage at 2:1 with the US$ compared with the DR etc. He’s never mentioned that before. Has he been away on briefing classes to help set us up for a devaluation?

    When Carson comments on the blog, we know what is being discussed, never mind they don’t think it’s necessary to tell the taxpayers anything, right now we know that devaluation is first on the list of topics…….

  46. The truth is that YOU adrien has figured out a way to destroy TRUTH…using the slave master mentality of indoctrination with a repetitive echo that sooner or later trasform a lie to REALITY…….

  47. The DLP / right
    Everybody else/ wrong
    How could this bee
    Somebody needs
    psychological evaluating
    head examining
    botsy examining
    stool examining
    mout examining
    teet ha fe tawk
    tawk ha fe walk
    walk ha fe caulk
    in the morning
    caulk /.evening
    shit heads or
    air heads dabbling dribbling dropsy
    should sit on a topsy
    not chair in house o’ assembly
    recall legislation
    hardears yuh go feel it; yuh now feel it
    bread and fish bullers

    Yaaaaaaaaaaaagga -run tings

  48. The Jet Blue announcement is indeed good news for Barbados.

    Now the hoteliers have advertise to fill those seats.

  49. Its not about trust, its about facts.

    Good news indeed, but does not redress the situation altogether.

    Daily American Airlines – B757 = 1,316 seats per week.
    Daily jetBlue – increased 580 seats (during non-peak periods) per week.

    Net potential loss – 736 seats per week.

    And does NOT address the US Airways merger potential.

    • Canada seems to be holding it’s own, we need to improve in Europe which adds more to the tourist numbers.

  50. This is off topic; BUT,

    I just read the article on the back page of the Advocate, and remarks of the MOH (assuring Barbadians that the government will ensure that there is access to health care for all), and the Acting CEO of QEH saying that QEH would never say they were “hung out to dry” by their suppliers,.

    Reading between the lines of their remarks; it sounds to me like the finances of the Government are far worse than I had previously understood.

    If health care finances in as bad a condition as the article suggests; there seems little hope that there will be money for BTA.

    BTW, where is the QEH CEO, when the hospital is living hand to mouth?

  51. as usual adrien always has his own version of bad news stack away in his back pocket must be a heavy load to carry around daily , who said life aint easy was right cause adrein is the perfect example

    • Cuba most popular Caribbean destination among Britons   2013-10-09 12:31:19 HAVANA, Oct. 8 (Xinhua) — Cuba has attracted the largest number of 2014 holiday bookings in the Caribbean region from British tourists, Caribbean News Digital magazine said Tuesday, citing Britain’s Loveholidays travel agency.

      Jonny Marsh, CEO of Loveholidays, said Cuba was the most popular Caribbean destination, accounting for 70 percent of bookings to the region for 2014.

      According to the magazine, Cuba “offers a tremendous value for the British in terms of the quality-price of its products.”

      Until recently, Cuba was off the radar for mainstream tourism in the Caribbean region, said Marsh. But today’s “all-inclusive” promotions at five-star hotels have helped make the Caribbean island nation one of the main attractions for the British travel market.

      Cuba’s tourism infrastructure is robust, offering more than 60,000 rooms at some 300 hotels throughout the country.

      Britain is now the second main source of international visitors to Cuba, after Canada.

      Loveholidays’ study of the most popular Caribbean destinations for the British market also found that Jamaica was considered the most economical destination in the region for those on a limited budget.

      Editor: Bi Mingxin

    • To think that Cuba is attracting the most Brits without any significant advertising speaks will for their product. It says a lot about ours and the expectation of the UK market.

  52. “…Your focus ought to be curbing the high rate of killings instead of lying on Barbados….”
    WAITING, WAITING, WAITING, I’m afraid you’re losing your mind. You cannot substantiate your 30 killings in St.Lucia for 2013, so you accuse me of lying on Barbados, the island of my birth by a St.Lucian mother.
    When Bajans, like you and Carson, talk shit about St.Lucia I come to her defense; and when St.Lucians talk shit about Barbados, which they hardly do, I likewise come to Barbados’ defense.
    Go to St. Albans infant school (the girl school) and St. Albans junior school (the boys school) in St. James, and also the Speightown boys school in St. Peter and look me up; then come again.

  53. @Carson
    Lets face it; the Barbados dollar is overvalued.

    Hear what I tell yer? Carson, being the fount of so much knowledge, please first of all advise us of what percentage of each tourist dollar goes back out in foreign exchange to feed and house them. Then please explain to us in detail how a devaluation of the Barbados Dollar would make any difference to the price of a holiday. Then tell us in detail what will happen to the cost of living in Barbados, a country that spends over a billion dollars on imported food and other items. Then spell out in detail what will happen to the manufacturing and agricultural sectors when the cost of their inputs (almost all imported) rise as a result of a devaluation. Please, lay off your research on what’s so bad in St Lucia, and give us the benefit of your wisdom.

  54. Please see the link below to see what will really attract visitors to Barbados. When you think of all the heritage sites that we have and what potential they have, why can’t our officialshave the vision of Larry Warren?

  55. It is a common myth that the hoteliers and other tourism partners do NOT spend substantial amounts on marketing their product. I am reliably informed by a former BHTA President, that their members alone, spend around $40 million annually. If you look at the BTA accounts (when available) you will see that a HUGE proportion of their budget is NOT spent directly on marketing at all.

  56. ‘Adrian
    I hate to keep harping about (the absence of) marketing and advertising.

    I googled “Barbados Tourism Authority Annual Report” and Barbados Tourism Authority Financial Statement”, but found nothing.

    I can only speak to the matter in Canada/Toronto; where newspaper and other media adversing for Barbados tourism product is virtually non-existent.

    I came across this comment in a post in one your articles in another blog:

    “K Murphy
    July 8, 2013 at 3:47 pm

    Hello, and Greetings from the United States ~

    Q: Whom is the Barbados Tourism Authority actually “Targeting” in their marketing ?

    I am not sure, as I have never seen a single advertisement in the US.”

    If the hotels and other BHTA members are spending $40 million annually on marketing, and I do not see any ads in Canada and K Murphy has never seen a single advertisement in the US, they are not getting much bang for their $40 million bucks in 2 of the 3 key markets.

    If advertising is a form of communication for marketing and used to encourage, persuade, or manipulate an audience (viewers, readers or listeners; sometimes a specific group) to continue or take some new action, I have to say they are not communicating very well.

    Are they spending their advertising dollars in China and Brazil?

    You said – “Something has to change”

    I said
    The “something that has to change” is that the hoteliers, individually or collectively through BHTA, have to step up to fill that void left by BTA’s absence, to encourage, persuade, or manipulate past or new visitors to choose to vacation in Barbados.

    Failure to do so will simply ensure that the downward spiral in long stay visitors will continue and accelerate; and in the words of CCC (who I hate to quote) the dying tourism horse will be dead.

    Please tell me where/how the $40 million was spent.

    BTW – I was able to find the BHTA 2012 Annual Report, a very comprehensive and detailed report. I note that about 50% of its income is for staff costs and about 8% is for advertising, public relations and promotional tours.

  57. I understand that the BHTA accounts are exactly that, and cover the finances of the Association and not of the individual members. Don’t forget a lot of the individual members funds go into supporting BTA led promotions (ie: WTM and ITB) and all the trade/road shows around the various markets. Add complimentary rooms, meals etc., and the real cost to the private sector really adds up.

  58. Adrian


    I understand that times are tough in Barbados tourism; but I do not understand why no advertising in North America.

    Piggy backing with BTA has not been working for the past 18 months.

    “Something has to change”

    Sandals advertises profusely.

    St. Lucia advertises jointly with Air Canada and Westjet weekly.

    Mexican, Cuban, Dominican Republic, Belize properties are advertised weekly.

    Is there something that the Barbados tourism industry knows that those in the these other countries do not know – about marketing/advertising?

    Barbados cannot afford to sit and wait for Butch to build his Beaches and promote Barbados as he does for St. Lucia, Grenada, Antigua, Bahamas and T&C

  59. DD, we CAN do a lot better and that applies to both the public and private sector. The first hurdle to climb is getting politics out of tourism. My thoughts are putting the Opposition Tourism Shadow onto the BTA board before (if ever) it is restructured. That way, they could never deny knowledge of, or involvement , whichever party is in ‘power’.

  60. The problem is that Hotel sector is owned and operated by a lot of visionless people. They depend on Government for everything.

    Without Government they are lost.

  61. Carson, we already know that and to remind the public that the hotel you were associated with begged for and received nearly ONE million in TIRF (Tourism Industry Relief Funds) taxpayers monies.
    What is the expression, ‘the pot calling the kettle black’
    Shall I remind you of the dates it was paid over to your visionless hotel?


  62. Peltdownman

    Wouldn’t it be great if the Auditor General COULD tell us where the money is going – or has gone.

    This is from Chapter 1, General Issues, in the Report of the Auditor General for the year 2012
    “1.2 It has been five (5) years since Government has been switched from the cash to accrual basis of accounting; however, there continue to be considerable shortcomings in the accounts presented which have so far resulted in the Audit Office being unable to verify that the financial statements are presented fairly and in accordance with International Public Sector Accounting standards. There were numerous omissions from the financial statements presented, and these included over $150 million which was owed to the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus
    1.3 Revenue continues to be recorded on a cash, rather than an accrual basis, and numerous items on the balance sheet such as Plant, Equipment and Furniture, and Accounts Receivable could not be verified because of the absence of adequate supporting schedules. There is a need for an urgent examination of accounting currently being practiced by Government since, in many instances, there is no adherence to International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS) to which the Government has subscribed. Regrettably, as in previous years, I have to report that my Office could not certify that the financial statements which were presented gave an accurate picture of the financial position and operations of the Government.”

    So the Auditor General CAN’T tell us where the money is going or where it has gone.

    This is much worse than DD could have imagined.

    How can anyone trust what the MOF or the GOB say if they cannot keep a proper set of books?

    QEH cannot pay its drug suppliers (partners).

    BTA has $13 million of past due payables, according to the MOF in his budget speech. How do we know it is not $23 million, or $33 million.

    How can Government expect to raise money on international markets, when it can’t keep the books?

    How can anyone trust anything the Government says?

    IMF to the rescue please.

  63. Just booked a week in Costa Rica. Air far from Miami $400 return, hotel Courtyards Mariott with pool and gym $90 per night and I can buy local healthcare for very little money. So what can Barbados offer to compete?

  64. David


    Who knows if they can’t keep books.

    I wonder how many of the names on the list of delinquents are actually up-to-date; but their contributions are lost in the accounting system the AG says is in urgent need of examination

  65. Caribbean Lover | October 10, 2013 at 6:29 AM |
    Look boy you are a waste of space you like herpes you recur and irritate. I don’t give a rats ass who born you or where. Neither do I give a cow’s crutch if you went school in St.Peter or you sponge off taxpayers money at Cave Hill. When you speak ill of Barbados as you did I will confront you. You low islanders have a long culture of bad mouthing Barbados none more so than your leaders. I don’t give a f**k about you or your leaders. Your island has big crime and economic problems denying and lying your fanny off on Barbados isn’t going to solve them.

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