And the Seychelles marketing juggernaut continues


(Posted 26th June 2015)

Following the Seychelles’ success at the World Travel Awards for Africa and the Indian Ocean last weekend did the Seychelles Tourism Board bring all their key foreign marketing executives to Mahe for the midyear review and to establish existing challenges in key market places. The event took place on Eden Island’s Eden Bleu Hotel and included key private sector stakeholders for the opening session and selected further interaction.

The rise in visitor arrivals this year so far by a staggering 16 percent will no doubt please the powers that be but the Seychelles’ secret of success is in part at least rooted in not resting on laurels but looking at the future and aiming to bring yet more tourists to the archipelago.

Tourism and Culture Minister Alain St. Ange hit the nail on the head when in his opening remarks he said: ‘When tourism works everybody is happy and when it doesn’t everybody screams’, appealing to the private sector to be on the same wavelength and working hand in hand with the tourism board and his ministry.

He also took aim at an apparent ‘leakage’ where visitors numbers recorded at the airport do vary from guests staying in registered establishments by as much as 12 to 16 percent, suggesting that they have made direct deals with non-licensed operators of guest houses, villas and apartments. St. Ange vowed to use all available means, including the regular monitoring of social media, to establish if unlicensed establishments advertise to rent out rooms and bring them to book. He further suggested that this was in the interest of all licensed hospitality providers who contribute to the marketing effort of the Seychelles and they deserved protection from underpricing and from unscrupulous operators not paying taxes.

Establishment to establishment visits by the Minister and key members of his team have taken place and continue to allow one on one interaction between hotel, resort and accommodation owners and government to hear about the challenges the industry faces and how best to address the issue of the high cost of doing business.

STB CEO Sherin Naiken also addressed the gathering and was quoted to have said: ‘This year so far the industry has performed well in terms of visitor arrivals, which is already 16% above the figures for the same period last year. But this does not mean that we can sit back and be complacent as we still have some markets which need particular attention and effort because their economic and political situations are impacting on our marketing drive’.

Tourism stakeholders are confident though that the launch next week of nonstop flights by Air Seychelles to Paris CDG will make a major difference in having the French market gather additional pace and maintain its lead position as the number one source of foreign tourists to the archipelago. A series of charter flights from China to Mahe in the second half of the year are also expected to boost arrivals from the most important growth market and should the charters result in the launch of nonstop scheduled flights it would no doubt catapult China into the top three producer markets in no time. Those positions are presently held by Germany and Italy which are connected to the Seychelles by one nonstop Condor flight from Frankfurt and multiple daily options to connect via Emirates, which flies double daily from Dubai to Mahe and Etihad, which also flies from several airports in Germany and Italy via Abu Dhabi to Mahe.

%d bloggers like this: