DeSilva: focus on leisure air arrivals

  • Zane DeSilva, the Minister of Tourism and Transport (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Bermuda must focus on air arrivals to keep the tourism industry flying high.

Zane DeSilva, the tourism minister, said increases in visitor numbers announced by the Bermuda Tourism Authority, were welcome.

He said: “When I consider that this is the third straight year of growth for Bermuda’s Tourism Industry, I have to pause and recognise Kevin Dallas, BTA CEO, all of the men and women of the Bermuda Tourism Authority and our tourism stakeholders.”

“Bermuda should be immensely proud of the hard work and dedication you have all put towards making Bermuda the destination of choice, and helping improve our local accommodation, entertainment and activities.”

Mr DeSilva added: “With cruise arrivals contributing the lion’s share of our tourism growth, however, it is time to focus our efforts on growing leisure air arrivals.

“More work must be done to encourage persons to fly to Bermuda, stay in our hotels, eat in our restaurants and spend time enjoying all Bermuda has to offer.

“Only then will all sectors of our tourism industry enjoy the full benefit.”

Figures revealed by the BTA last week showed an 11.7 per cent year-on-year increase in visitor arrivals and a 28 per cent increase in visitor spending.

A record total of 770,683 visitors came to Bermuda in 2018 with 203,697 tourists flying to the island for leisure — the highest figure since 2002.