REUNION REMAINS A KEY REGIONAL MARKET FOR THE SEYCHELLES
(Posted 24th March 2018)
For the second consecutive year did the Seychelles Tourism Board host a workshop bringing together some of Reunion’s top travel trade professionals and local hotel partners.
This presented the perfect platform for them to network on how to diversify and improve the products and services offered to clients and find ways to better sell Seychelles to holidaymakers in Reunion.
The half-day workshop was held at the Constance Ephelia Resort at Port Launay, last weekend.
The Seychelles Tourism Board’s Chief Executive, Sherin Francis, Director for Europe Bernadette Willemin, Senior Marketing Executive based in Reunion, Bernadette Honore, Senior Marketing Executive in the Destination Development section, Elsie Sinon and Marketing Executive for the Indian Ocean, Daphnee Zahary, were present at the event.
Although it is still a small market, Reunion is considered to be an important market for the Seychelles Tourism Board as they send a lot of families who prefer to stay at the small establishments.
Both Mrs Francis and Mrs Willemin encouraged the Reunion trade partners to make the most of their visit and networking opportunities with the local partners, and called on them to use this opportunity to enhance their knowledge of the various products on offer, so that they can better sell the destination to their clients.
Mrs Willemin also stressed that the partnership between the two islands is a successful and profitable one, while also thanking Air Austral, the sole airline providing direct connections between Seychelles and Reunion.
The workshop saw the participation of the top sellers for Seychelles in Reunion for 2017: Transcontinents Voyages, Bourbon Voyages, Tropic Voyages, Thomas Cook Group, Welcomes Voyages, Milles Tour, Alizoa Voyages, La Kaz Voyages, Marines Voyages, 21eme Parallele & Anthurium Tourisme Ocean Indien.
They conducted individual business to business meetings with the representatives of hotels located on the Seychelles’ islands of Mahe, Praslin, La Digue & Silhouette, as they endeavor to develop their sales strategies for Seychelles.
It was also the perfect opportunity for them to address challenges faced and brainstorm on how to generate more interest in the destination among holidaymakers in Reunion.
The Air Austral representative from Reunion present at the workshop, Ashvine Severin, noted that airline operates two flights per week to Seychelles during peak season and one flight per week during off-season. She said the fact that Air Austral has made a business decision to maintain the Seychelles-Reunion route shows that the marketing of the Seychelles islands as a tourist destination in Reunion is starting to bear fruits.
The statement is confirmed by the figures of visitor arrivals from Reunion, which is the Seychelles’ top contributor of tourists in the Indian Ocean region. In 2017, a total of 6,315 visitors from Reunion came to Seychelles, which represents a 6 percent increase. From January 2018 to date, Reunion has sent 1,322 visitors to Seychelles and STB is targeting a 5 percent growth on that market this year.
Aside of the business to business meetings, the Reunion travel trade also had the chance to conduct visits to have a first-hand impression of the various products on offer. The visits were organised by their local partner Destination Management Companies; Mason’s Travel, 7° South, Creole Travels Services and Seychelles European Reservation.
Meanwhile has the Seychelles Tourism Board also celebrated their 13th anniversary this week and congratulations are in order for the STB teams, past and present, who accomplished so much and put the Seychelles Islands on the world map with their marketing juggernaut.