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Fall-off in Brits likely

marciadottin, [email protected]

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A RECENT Caribbean Tourism Organisation (CTO) survey showed there is likely to be a greater fall-off in visitor arrivals from Britain when the second phase of the air passenger duty (APD) is applied next month.
Director of research and information at the CTO, Winfield Griffith, revealed this yesterday.
The APD, which is set to go up from November 1, will move from £50 (BDS$154) to £75 per person ($230) for economy class seats and from £75 (BDS$230) to £150 (BDS $464) in premium, business and first class.
Griffith, who was giving a special presentation to employees of the Barbados Statistical Services at the old NIS building in Bridgetown, said: “When you consider the fact that British travellers tend to go in family groups, you are talking about multiplying that by a factor of about three or four plus the actual ticket price.”
He continued: “We did a survey at CTO in March, April and an earlier phase last year, and what we discovered last year during the off season was that after the ticket price exceeded £500 to come Barbados, the interest in travelling fell drastically.
“This year during the winter season the survey showed that if they exceed £550, then interest in travel declined rather rapidly. We expect, and so far that is what is showing up, that we will lose about 12 per cent of the UK market when the tickets exceed £500,” said Griffith.
He said the “little satisfaction” that was left was that the American market was “gaining”. He said, however, numbers alone would not tell the entire story of what was really happening in the tourism market.
“It means that we need to put in place the machinery to generate on a more frequent basis the myriad of indicators necessary to stay on top of the situation, to more swiftly and regularly monitor and analyse the situation,” he said.  (MM)