Tourism product ‘tired’, says Hall

A local official believes the entire Caribbean tourism product needs to be rejuvenated. In fact, Chief Executive Officer of the Barbados Tourism Product Authority (BTPA), Dr Kerry Hall, describes it as “tired” and lacking in investment.

Speaking on local radio here on Sunday, Dr Hall also warned that the region’s competitiveness could be at stake.

“The Caribbean tends to have a bit of a tired product and this goes back to the fact that a lot of islands have physical constraints, the recession has taken its toll.

“Ironically in order to make sure our products are constantly reinvented and refreshed, will require injections of tourism investment and sometimes that’s just not forthcoming because when money has to be spent, sometimes there are other areas of priority above those, and that has an impact as well on us because if we have a tired product, there are a lot of destinations out there, emerging destinations, which are giving a higher quality product for a more cost-effective price,” she added.

Hall’s comments come ahead of next week’s State of the Industry Conference, which will be held at the Hilton Barbados Resort from September 14-16.

The BTPA official warned that the Caribbean needs to do whatever is necessary to remain competitive, particularly in the face of what she said was probably the most volatile environment in the history of the region’s tourism industry.

Industry officials continue to grapple with issues of safety and security, as well as acts of terrorism and geo-political upheaval. Issues of currency fluctuations and climate change are also high on their agenda, as they could potentially affect arrivals.

“We will suffer from rising sea levels and coastal degradation, rising temperatures, and also overseas we’re gonna see longer summers and hotter winters. And that is going to have an impact on movement to the Caribbean,” Hall said.

4 Responses to Tourism product ‘tired’, says Hall

  1. Nathan J Lovell Beckles
    Nathan J Lovell Beckles September 6, 2016 at 5:30 am

    Been saying this for a while now, aside from the beaches, there’s nothing really to do in Barbados

  2. seagul September 6, 2016 at 9:17 am

    There are an increasing amount of destinations out there, emerging destinations, which are giving a higher quality product for a more cost-effective price. But the hoteliers here remain greedy, simply put. With more reasonable rates there is a positive possibility for year round occupancy and an increase in all round employment.

  3. Linda Wills September 6, 2016 at 9:49 am

    I have been going to Barbados for the last 15 years, and to be honest it is not the Caribbean Island it used to be. There has been far too much development on the West Coast, the beaches are disappearing as well as the Palm trees. To be honest I feel that the Barbados Government are only interested in the so called celebrities that want to build their holiday homes on the Island rather than trying to encourage tourists to come and visit their Island for their holidays. I live in the UK and to be honest a lot off people are going to the other islands for their holidays, mainly as they are a little bit cheaper, they offer very good quality accommodation and the Caribbean experience, which is now lacking in Barbados. I also feel that money should be spent on looking after the heritage buildings, the old plantation houses, and the Zoo. Also bring back the Harbour Master please, so many people loved going on that including us.

  4. Tony Webster September 8, 2016 at 12:29 am

    A decade or two back, I very much appreciated the (then) B.T.A.’s efforts, to survey outgoing air passengers at G.A.I.A.

    However, I once delivered a little Google of my own, when all the Big-Brains at my employers, from all across the region, was unanimous to arrange a survey of our current customers ” on board”, to ascertain, a few li’l nuances, like, how can we serve you better, etc.

    Ossie-Moore Webster then piped up, to point out while the plan had some merit, it was far, far more vital that we that we seek the deliberate and truthful opinions of those folks…who were NOT our customers.

    Plus change…


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