The 7th annual Central America Travel Market kicked off its 3-day promotion of the region’s natural and cultural diversity in the former colonial capital of Antigua, Guatemala. Between October 18-20, over 245 tour operators and media drawn from a vast range of countries from around the world.
Exhibitors where from Guatemala, Costa Rica, Panama, Nicaragua, Honduras and BELIZE. Our booth was manned with 16 participants, including Portofino Beach Resort and Belize Hotel Association. It was a successful show for all of us… and for BHA even a little more as they used their brand new Belize Hotel Guide for the first time. It looks awesome!
Manuel Heredia Jr., Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Civil Aviation of Belize and President Pro Tempore of the CCT welcomed everybody to the show with a very informative and welcoming speech regarding Tourism in Central America. As well Minister Heredia came to visit our booth daily, and spoke to many press and media. We were able to promote our Touristic products to the buyers who believe that Central America is an ideal region for tourists who enjoy unforgettable travel experiences.
Written by Tacogirl, on July 2nd 2010
Today I am doing something out of the ordinary and heading to Burrell Boom with Mike. We have a meeting to attend so I booked us a tacogirl special on the 7:am Tropic Air and away we go. Nothing like a plane ride over the Caribbean Sea to start your day right.
The BHA 2010 Biannual AGM was both educational and productive. Attending the meeting gave Mike and I the opportunity to meet the board members and learn more about the BHA and their mission as well as explain the new website concept to them and answer questions. The Belize Hotel Association board is composed of a strong group of people who are results driven and very focused. The board members are all local business owners who volunteers by choice because they believe strongly in what they are doing and it shows.
Through increased yearly participation in trade shows abroad the BHA is building a strong presence for Belize within the travel industry. I thought it was great that they have included information in a few other languages within their Belize literature. This allows for people in other countries to learn more about Belize in their native tongue and shows a willingness of the BHA to cater to different markets.
The Belize Hotel Association has a very solid marketing plan and with their ongoing participation in Travel and Tourism trade shows and the numbers they are getting show clearly that their marketing plan is working. During the presentation BHA were able to show how tracking traffic on the BTB website showed increased visits from a specific location as a result of being at a trade show there.
It was very inspiring to learn more about the Belize Hotel Association’s goals and how they have been continuing to develop their relationship with the Belize Tourism Board in order to create a united vision for Belize. The two groups have been working hard together to benefit Belize and expand our country in the tourism and travel market. The BTB has been generously helping the BHA with ongoing funding and this shows that the BTB believes in what the the BHA is doing and is willing to work together and build something solid.
I have always believed there is enough pie for everyone and in listening to board members of the BHA speak it is clear that they are really working hard to put themselves out there with the goal of knowing that success for any of their members is a success for the team. They have future plans to give members training so that everyone is able to understand and read their statistics and be able to qualify that the hard work is paying off in the form of visits to websites and bookings for it’s members. The saying strength in numbers holds true here and the Belize Hotel association is proof of that.
Tacogirl’s Webiste: www.tacogirl.com
BHA’s Board of Directors:
Doug Thompson (President)
Einer Gomez (Vice President)
Ali Flota (2nd Vice President)
Robin Mc Cutcheon (Treasurer)
Mike Preston (Secretary)
Mariam Roberson (former President)
Teresa Parkey (former President)
Sandra van Noord
Known to be the largest tourism trade show in Latin America, Tianguis has always been the definitive place to meet, greet, and promote tourism.
The Belize delegation was excited to be part of the show. Attendees where Tess Avilla, administrator of the Belize Hotel Association, representing Belize and all their members.
Lorena Vaques from Hugh Parkey’s Belize Adventure lodge, Jaguar Adventures Tour and Travel and Belize Dive connection.
Michael Preston, director of the Belize Hotel Association and owner of Midas Resort located in San Ignacio
And Sandra van Noord, as well director of BHA and owner of Portofino Beach Resort in San Pedro, representing Belize, Portofino Beach Resort and San Ignacio Resort Hotel.
According to the Travel Trade who where attending the previous years, the show was a bit quieter this year, but overall the festivities seem in full swing. Attitudes are good, and no one is pretending that the road back will be easy. But as usual, the hoteliers and destinations are here, selling their hearts out to promote their country and Belize did great!