While this may not be universally accepted, I firmly believe that our banks can be far more proactive in contributing to our overall national economic recovery. We understand they are under severe pressure regarding the Government ‘haircutting’ of bonds, debentures and other borrowings, but no-one can be under any illusion that they will not make up this deficit by imposing yet more ‘creative’ ways in extracting fees, from the only other means possible, their customers.
From a tourism perspective, they could partner with the private sector, possibly through the trade association, to offer bonus or cash-back when using credit cards for payment during specific shoulder periods to grow the staycation market and entice more locals to dine in our myriad of restaurant choices. Of course there is no reason to restrict any promotion to solely accommodation and dining, it could be expanded to include day spas, activities, attractions and car rental among others.
At least one of our banks currently offers enhanced cash-back on groceries, fuel and pharmaceuticals with a lower percentage rate offered on other purchases or payments.
Any joint promotion could also be restricted to specific periods, a particular month or two and the technology already exists to monitor the cost-effectiveness of the campaign.
With what appears, an inevitable Brexit, just days away, we can only speculate at what potential negative effect it will have on our British market, whether through higher prices and/or a lower value of Sterling. It is therefore imperative that we put some other marketing initiatives in place that could possibly help mitigate this threat.
‘Our’ banks will not be immune from any loss in visitor arrival numbers and spend from the United Kingdom, even if only reflected in currency exchange at branch level. Ian Strafford-Taylor the CEO of FairFX, the foreign exchange dealer, recently stated ‘with two months to go until the UK is due to leave the European Union, it’s not just analysts who should be keeping an eye on how the Pound reacts. British tourists looking to get best value for their holiday money, in or out of the Eurozone, should be watching closely where their money will go further.
The vast majority of repeat visitors will already be paying prices higher than ever before, due to the imposition of the various new taxes. Perhaps it has never been so important to at least try to demonstrate that we can continue to justify a value-for-money offering.
Local banks should also be fully aware of the explosion of pre-paid currency cards in our source markets, where fixed exchange rates can be obtained, often with a very generous sign-up bonus.
In the case of US Dollar options which include Revolut, WeSwap and FairFX, these can be used just like debit cards, with no commission payable by the holder. As an example, the GB Pounds 25.28 placed in a FairFX card gave me a spendable value of US$63 with a TopCashBack special offer.
A great deal more creativity is needed.
One way the banks could improve their performance and profitability would be to cease being an unwitting employment agency for deadbeats and sack all those stone-faced layabouts who spend their time frustrating any attempts by their customers to get service far less satisfaction.
Wily gives Adrian platitudes for coming up with new ideas each week in his postings. As an investor in some of these Canadian banks Wily feels he’s already given away significant investment returns in supporting Bajan deadbeats and beggars. GOB has significantly squeezed all banks in recent years to support their incompedence, time for more/all offshore banks to consider pulling out of the Caribbean. We’ve already seen CIBC and Scotibank initiate small scale withdrawals which Willy feels will no doubt escalate in the near future. If this happens then the SHIT WILL REALLY HIT THE FAN.
The Banks is the ones who do the Money laundering and made millions from this they are no looking to give out gains to look for a return on from any Bajan , You/ They all mess up the system and are now feeding off the people with bank fees, This is what happens when the Government CB, DLP , BLP are in the Land and Money laundering no Clear Title Deed, 126 years of History records missing for title searches is what kill the banks in Barbados , Black are not making loans unless they are in government making a fixed pay,All fill their pocket and home resting well, Until Trump EO run them to charges and then Jail!
The challenge for Barbados and the other islands is how do we remain relevant in a crowded space. What barbados has or use to us a more modern infrastructure and legacy relationship with the UK. What we have now is a crumbling infrastructure and others around us on the improve. With Brexit and weak positions of recent UK governments when it comes to foreign policy given the Brexit albatross, how does Barbados plan to reposition itself. We have to.
In the “don’t worry, it couldn’t happen here” department:
Los Angeles Typhus outbreak due to filthy streets- Tucker Carlson 2/4/19
@David February 5, 2019 6:03 AM
Wily agrees 100% with your post.
Barbados only has to look northwest to Martinique to see their initial BIG MISTAKE OF INDEPENDANCE, Martinique remained firmly attached to Colonial France and look at their present economics, infrastructure etc compared to Barbados. Granted France had a somewhat different approach to thier colonies than England. This begs the question, would Barbados have been better off being under UK jurisdiction today if Barbados had not separated and instead negotiated the terms for union.
Barbados is now and in the future suffer economic ills as they along with all other independent Caribbean Nations have and are discovering in the NEW WORLD ECONOMY. Even highly resource abundant, Venezuela for example are in ruins because of poor and corrupt political management. There are definite advantages being closely economically aligned with leading nations with clout.
We have to move on Wily.
@ David BU
Ah David what we are now witnessing is the disruption which you and Pacha predicted. The international Capitalist system is transitioning. Have patience. This is the revolution that you were so eagerly looking forward to. No pain no gain. Lol!!
The power play in Venezuela is a fight over oil supplies and which hegemony will be in control. Take a ringside seat and enjoy.Lol!!!
The ring will be located in the Caribbean?
@ Wiley at 9 :40 AM
Hind sight is always 20/20. Barbados, had Nelson lost, could have seen Barbados ending up as a Haiti, Martinique or even Guadeloupe.
History is history. Let us concentrate on making Barbados the best it can be with all the intellectual and material resources at our disposal.
I think the precursive auto correct is working overtime again. I am going to be a faster typist than this algorithm some day.
@ David BU
At the moment the Caribbean, including Venezuela, is contending for Centre Stage. Barbados’ Economic Zone is adjacent to Guyana’s, Venezuela’s and Trinidad’s. That will evolve if the competition is about fossil fuel.
If it is about the dominant reserve currencies and trade surpluses ,then there are other competing rings.
We are in for some interesting times.
@ Vincent Codrington who wrote ” Let us concentrate on making Barbados the best it can be with all the intellectual and material resources at our disposal.”
” a newly formed Bahamian holding company”
On page 3 of today’s Mid-week Nation Newspaper, there are two “work permit notices.” One from Royal Westmoreland in which they indicated their intention to apply for a work permit to recruit a non-national for the post of “GOLF COURSE SUPERINTENDENT” after “having received NO APPLICATIONS” for the position…….
…………and Hilton Barbados Resort “having received NO SUITABLE APPLICATIONS in respect of our advertisement for an “EXECUTIVE CHEF,” it is our intention to apply for a work permit for a non-Barbadian to fill the position.”
Also, on page 40, Sandy Lane Hotel has a vacancy notice for a “TRAINING & DEVELOPMENT MANAGER.” the deadline for applications is February 8, 2019
I’ll bet that, as usual, Sandy Lane will not receive any suitable applications.
I’m waiting in anticipation for the “work permit notice.”
“Barbados the best it can be with all the intellectual and material resources at our disposal.”
What you have is all your going to get with the present level of INTELLECTUAL AND MATERIAL RESOURCES, rasholes leading the pack in search of the next sheep to fleece. Let’s hear some undertones about re-aligning the country with UK, USA, Canada etc to invoke some ethic and regulatory responsibilities. Barbados has tried “INDEPENDANCE” leadership and in 60 years has lead to four invites to IMF for bailouts and one SOVERGIEN FAILURE, time to look at a new direction with economic and financial stability.