Adrian Loveridge Column – BREXIT Looms and UK Tourists Weigh Cost of Travel

This weeks column comes from within the United Kingdom with the continued Brexit debacle hanging a massive question mark and uncertainty over the tourism industry. While the value of the Sterling against other major currencies has for decades been volatile, tour operators are left to second guess what a realistic exchange rate will be for the US$ and Euro next year in order to price their holiday offerings. Combine that with increasing oil prices raising the cost of A1 aviation fuel and a double whammy. Then add in that almost everything imported into the UK will cost more post 31st October, resulting in depleted discretionary spending for every British family and you begin to comprehend the concern from what still remains our largest single visitor market.

With the huge increases in the cost of flying to and staying on Barbados through the introduction of additional departure taxes, accommodation and ancillary tourism levies imposed in October 2018, many of our normally loyal visitors are already questioning whether or not they can afford to return. For potential new visitors, they are questioning where they cannot obtain better value-for-money. When you see return airfares from Britain to South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and all inclusive holidays to the Indian Ocean priced at less than a comparable period to Barbados, not surprisingly, destination choices are being seriously considered.

Of course our tourism providers on Barbados have not been spared staggering increases in operating costs and it has become almost impossible to absorb them any more without bringing business viability and reduction in staffing levels into question.

One of our restaurant partners recently indicated that they could no longer accept the BDS$99 per person rate for our re-Discover special dinner offering. Completely understandable but Bds$99 at the current rate of exchange is around GB Pounds 41 and apart from our more well heeled guests hardly a bargain to the vast majority.

To put this in perspective, my brother and I, recently ate at a large chain carvery restaurant, where a main course with almost unlimited sides plus a choice of several delicious desserts cost BDS$18 each.

The Long Haul Holiday Report put together by Post Office Money and Travelbag measures the cost of ten everyday holiday purchases across 34 popular long-haul destinations. In 2018 Barbados recorded a 20% increase for this basket’ – the second highest across the 34.

127 comments

  • time to steal another university

    Like

  • peterlawrencethompson

    @Hal
    “Can either of you explain why the low-hanging fruit of tourism – heritage tourism – is largely ignored by our tourism officials?”
    ++++++++++++++++
    I am a member of both of the major nonprofit heritage organizations that are supported by public funds: the Barbados Museum & Historical Society, and the Barbados National Trust. I have more sympathy for the museum. It seems to me that these organizations should be leaders in the development of heritage tourism, but both organizations seem to be, ironically, prisoners of their own history.
    Barbados should be the home of a world class Museum of the Middle Passage. The right place to put it is in the 1861 Marshall Hall building on Hincks St., within the UNESCO designated World Heritage Site, just a few yards away from where the enslaved people were offloaded in Bridgetown. https://www.terracaribbean.com/B34933/Barbados/Commercial-Sale/Land/Marshall-Hall
    This would take about $100 million to do justice to and I don’t have that kind of loose change in my pockets.

    Like

  • @ PLT

    Have you ever tried researching your family history in Barbados? Well I have and have written about this on BU before. I have also done family searches in the UK. I know which is easier and which I prefer.
    Then there is our local history: the Bayland is the home our our maritime history (it is not a coincidence that Sir Garry Sobers came from the Bayland and his father was a seaman) where is this reflected in our history? The vast majority of the Barbadian Diaspora had a connection with Herbert House. What is Herbert House now used for?
    The London Transport Museum has a more comprehensive history of Barbadians who worked for London Transport than our Archives department.
    Talk is cheap.

    Like

  • Boris Johnson is a lame duck prime minister.The Supreme Court by an overwhelming 11-0 judgement has consigned him to the dustbin of selective politics.Donald Trump is as was George Bush 43 a product of selective presidential politics.Bush got Blair to support him in a stupid war in Iraq costing over 4000 young Americans in their most productive years to lose their lives.Trump is now like a headless chicken because he cannot now rely on stupid ignorant Boris to support him in sending British troops to Saudi Arabia.Boris has been humiliated and Trump thinking he could hoodwink the Brits into a bilateral trade agreement ( read dumping ground for US substandard products)as opposed to a forceful EU entity is now crying crocodile tears because it is clear to all that Brexit is no more.The UK will remain a formidable member of the EU where they are better able to defeat American Imperialism.
    BREXIT NEVER!!!!
    REMAIN FOREVER!!!!

    Like

  • @ Hal.

    That is a good question and you are correct . History regrettably is not something we value of protect. Just take a drive up by Fort George Heights and see how we dealt with a piece of our heritage.

    Like

  • @ Hal

    We are not ready. Visit Jamaica and we would see what was done to Bob Marley’s birthplace.

    Like

  • I agree with Miller. These days we stand in garbage and most people don’t seem to mind. The abandoned and unkempt properties and vehicles are a terrible eyesore and a haven for vermin as are many properties where people actually live. Meanwhile I haven’t seen an Environmental Officer since they were still known as Health Inspectors. What do they do now – sit at a desk in the office and collect travel? Do they still get interest free car loans? My suggestion is to abolish some of those posts and use the money to buy garbage trucks and hire debushers and demolish the dilapidated houses.

    Like

  • According to the BBC* – Thomas Cook currently owe GB Pounds 338 million to hotels – *Radio 4 news 7.21am – 25th September 2019

    Like

  • And was in debt up to nearly £4bn. One hotel in Mexico alone was owed US$2m. Where was the auditor? The regulators? The watching eye of the media?

    Like

  • How many Thomas Cook customers have been airlifted from Barbados? How many hotels have been impacted? This year and the 2019/20 season?

    Like

  • 66 currently in Barbados traveling on BA on Virgin will be looked after. Plans are in motion to repackage prebookings. The BTMI is on the job.

    Like

  • @ David BU

    Who is paying the bills for these re-bookings? What is the total costs?

    Like

  • @Vincent

    If you listen to Billy Griffith there is some kind of campaign to be launched, the mechanics of it was not made public.

    Like

  • @ Hal Austin at 2 :41 AM

    Should that question not be:” Where are the CFOs of these hotels? ” Are any Barbadian hotels among the creditors? If so, what is the quantum?
    The economic space in which the tourism industry operates is the free market. It has risks and bankruptcy is one of the downsides. Why do we expect other outcomes and register surprise and shock.? We need to get real.

    Like

  • Some have suggested that the Thomas Cook UK plc liquidation has negatively effected CONDOR. This is NOT the case and the Condor website is open for business with one way flights from Frankfurt/Barbados available from Euro 229 (about US$252) . PLEASE SEE: http://www.thomascook.com

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    I stand corrected. Condor did also enter insolvency proceedings but the German govt stepped in with a hefty loan.

    Liked by 1 person

  • The BTMI is on the job.

    The PR job(by).

    Like

  • It is reported that

    “Thomas Cook is covered by the Air Travel Organiser’s Licence financial protection scheme, which protects package holidays sold by travel businesses based in the UK.

    Atol protection means that if the package company you bought your holiday with collapses, then you are covered as the Government will look after you.

    The CAA, which runs Atol, says Atol protection will make sure you can finish your holiday and return home if the businesses collapses while you are away.

    If it collapses before you travel, then Atol protection will either refund you or find you a replacement holiday. This should keep disruption to a minimum.”

    Liked by 1 person

  • Vincent Codrington

    @ Hants at 3:06 PM

    Thanks very much Hants. That arrangement makes sense. I hope we have not been too previous.

    Like

  • The latest is that Boris is thinking about going to the Privy Council as a way to circumvent parliament.

    A failed state?

    Like

  • The latest is that Boris is thinking about going to the Privy Council as a way to circumvent parliament.
    A failed state?(Quote)

    Oh dear! Google!

    Like

  • @PLT

    Barbados should be the home of a world class Museum of the Middle Passage. The right place to put it is in the 1861 Marshall Hall building on Hincks St., within the UNESCO designated World Heritage Site, just a few yards away from where the enslaved people were offloaded in Bridgetown. (Quote)

    Wonderful idea. I have said since May 2018 that the President should contract her uncle to develop a cultural policy, in cooperation with the National Cultural Foundation. He is not only the leading cultural historian and theorist in the country, but such an appointment would not, could not, be seen a nepotism. It would be on merit.

    Like

  • What goigltwhat, the privy council factor is being discussed by leading players in the UK and on news outlets. Continue to play the man.

    https://inews.co.uk/news/politics/order-council-privy-john-major-benn-act-no-deal-brexit-extension-637732

    Like

  • forget destination weddings Barbados is ripe for destination funerals.get a great send off drinks and snacks at the cemetary bar solid.. or if you would rather be cremated we take you out to the crane and over you go.

    Like

  • @ Lawson

    How about making Barbados a destination for people getting on water skis and going missing (no reference to the recent case of two Americans). I can see some insurance fraudsters using this trick to make claims on life policies.

    Like

  • The Supreme Court ruled, then we had the narrative about circumventing the order by going to the privy Council, now there is talk about evoking emergency powers.

    It the UK a failed state?

    Like

  • SirSimpleSimonPresidentForLife

    Virgin Atlantic introduces more flights to Barbados for Winter 2019 Season
    https://barbadostoday.bb/2019/09/29/virgin-atlantic-introduces-more-flights-to-barbados-for-winter-2019-season/

    Like

  • Anne Giwa-Amu, who is Nigerian and Welsh, won her claim against the government department
    The Department for Work and Pensions has been ordered to pay out nearly £400,000 after a Cardiff woman won her claim for race and age discrimination.
    Anne Giwa-Amu told the BBC the department was “promoting a culture of racism”.
    The judge in her tribunal case said she had been a victim of deliberate and intended harassment by DWP staff.
    The department said racism was unacceptable and it took the judgement “very seriously”.
    Warning: This report includes racist and offensive language
    Anne Giwa-Amu, 59, who is mixed Nigerian and Welsh, joined the DWP branch in Caerphilly as a full-time administrative officer in 2017, after trying without success to start a small business.
    She was the only non-white recruit and only trainee over the age of 50 in her cohort, according to documents from Cardiff Magistrates’ Court seen by BBC News.
    Judge Howden-Evans said DWP staff had deliberately created a “hostile environment” for Ms Giwa-Amu and has ordered the department to pay out more than £386,000 in compensation.
    This includes £42,800 for injury to feelings, which is awarded in the “most serious” cases where there has been a lengthy campaign of harassment.
    “It comes as a relief after what has been a harrowing experience for three years,” Ms Giwa-Amu told the BBC.
    “I’ve had to experience real financial hardship and the perpetrators were promoted despite how they had treated me.”
    Ms Giwa-Amu was based in the branch of the DWP at Caerphilly in south-east Wales
    A DWP official had violated her dignity by using racist language such as “Paki-lover” in her presence, the court found.
    Another had further humiliated and discriminated against Ms Giwa-Amu by loudly laughing and telling her cohort he had “touched her bum”.
    Officials had also repeatedly accused Ms Giwa-Amu of stealing ice-cream, sprayed body-spray on themselves while next to her, and breached her confidence after she reported feeling “bullied”.
    Ms Giwa-Amu went on sick leave in March 2017 and was unlawfully dismissed in October that year for being unable to return to work, the court found.
    She had been living off £55 a week and later had no money for food after her final pay cheque was withheld.
    ‘Appalling’
    Ms Giwa-Amu told the BBC she has since been living with “immense stress and anxiety”.
    “Management at the DWP are paying lip service to the equality legislation,” she said. “By protecting offenders, they are promoting a culture of racism.”
    The DWP has been ordered to contact the Equality and Human Rights Commission for diversity awareness training and its permanent secretary, Peter Schofield, must directly review her case.
    Ms Giwa-Amu’s solicitor, Lawrence Davies from Equal Justice, said DWP staff had “set out to destroy the confidence and wellbeing of a black employee with their appalling conduct”.
    “None of the white DWP staff have been disciplined and some have been promoted,” he said.
    “Given that the DWP serves a high level of ethnic minority claimants, the presence of prejudice in the state benefits system is of grave concern.”
    In a statement, the DWP said: “Racism is totally unacceptable and action will be taken against any staff found to be expressing such views.
    “We take the judgement and the circumstances of this case very seriously.”

    Like

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