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Diaspora a key market, says travel journalist


Diaspora a key market, says travel journalist
Lebawit Lily Girma (GP)

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The Caribbean has been urged to target the diaspora in source markets for tourism business as a new sector, coming out of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The suggestion was made yesterday by award-winning travel journalist Lebawit Lily Girma, currently the tourism global reporter for Skift, the most influential business media and marketing company in global travel.

Girma joined Skift’s founder and CEO Rafat Ali in a virtual discussion on “The Trends Driving Travel’s Big Rebound: Implications for the Caribbean” organised by the Caribbean Tourism Organisation Allied Membership in collaboration with Skift.

She noted the Caribbean diaspora in the United States numbered about four million and said when this was combined with the diaspora numbers in the region’s other major source markets, it represented a formidable source of potential new business.

In her observations about travel trends as world tourism makes a resurgence following the devastating blow dealt by the COVID-19 pandemic, Girma said this was an opportunity for the region to change the way it regarded its diaspora.

Girma and Rafat identified five major travel trends emerging as the world tourism begins to move beyond the pandemic. Among them were the advent of subscription travel, the future of business travel with the growing preference for travelling and working remotely and the continued growth of short term holiday rentals.

The discussion was hosted  by chairman of the CTO Allied Membership William “Billy” Griffith, a former CEO of Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. (GC)