Giving inclusive programme another try
Local tourism officials are making another bid to boost earnings from the sector through the “free spending money” Barbados Island Inclusive programme.
They are repeating the initiative, which was introduced last year and was available to nationals from major source markets including Britain, United States, Canada, Brazil and the Caribbean.
This time, officials have decided to pair the offer with a number of cultural and sporting events. The Barbados Tourism Authority said visitors interested in taking part in the Island Inclusive package have up to March 15 to book, and were required to travel to Barbados between May 1 and December 19.
Under the programme tourists receive spending money based on their length of stay for use at participating attractions and restaurants. With a minimum stay of five nights, guests will receive $300 per person and on stays of seven nights or longer guests will receive $400 per person, based on a maximum of two people per room.
As was the case last year, vouchers will be distributed to guests upon hotel check-in. The events officials are pairing the special with to increase its marketability include Gospelfest, the inaugural Top Gear Festival, Crop Over, and the 5th annual Barbados Food & Wine And Rum Festival.
It was pointed out that “most” of the island’s properties were taking part in the programme as well as 30 attractions and restaurants.
Last year, Minister of Tourism and International Transport Richard Sealy said Government was pleased with the response to the programme, which was designed to stimulate the tourism industry and had $11 million in funding.
At that time, he said more than 5 000 tourists had taken advantage of the vouchers on offer and the venture was expected to bring an additional 15 000 tourists to Barbados with spending of $30 million.
Last year, visitors from the United Kingdom and Europe were entitled to $600 per individual, for a seven-night stay or $400 per person on a five-night stay. Tourists travelling from Canada and the United States each received $400 for a booking of seven nights and $300 for a stay of five nights.
Brazilian visitors were to receive $400 per person for a stay of seven nights; while tourists from the Caribbean were entitled to $300 per person for a five-night stay, and $200 for a booking of two nights.