The tourism industry is going to undergo major changes in a short space of time. Post-pandemic travellers will need evidence that their travel abroad will bring positive experiences to their lives without taking unnecessary risks, and Jamaica must step forward to attract these tourists.
Jamaica’s Minister of Tourism, Edmund Bartlett, commented: “We have now become a generation, unified and defined by our experience during this devastating global pandemic of COVID-19”
Generation C, which will be the post-pandemic generation of tourists, will change the way global tourism is marketed in the future, and Jamaica, like other countries which depend on international tourism, will have to step forward and seek new methods to attract these tourists.
In the words of Edmun Bartlett, “Not taking action now will mean being left out of a much more competitive tourism industry”.
The Annual General Meeting of the United Kingdom Chapter of the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) by the Ministry of Tourism of Jamaica, officially defined the concept of Generation C.
“There is no doubt that tourism is among the sectors most affected by this crisis, but it is also at the heart of the recovery,” said the Minister.
The Minister stressed the importance of the return to normality in tourism and the need to generate that security that new tourists will seek, since, as he pointed out, tourism represents 11% of the world’s GDP and generates more than 320 million jobs.
“We are pioneers in this new perspective because of the country’s well-earned reputation in the art of resilience and also because of the importance of recovering quickly from difficult conditions,” Bartlett said.
He also highlighted the joint work being done by global tourism ministries to create policies that address health and safety within the tourism framework that will remain once the pandemic is over.
GlobalData analyst Bed Cordwell said: “The impact of COVID-19 on the tourism industry will be long-lasting. The creation of a new type of clientele seems an entirely feasible and likely outcome. Tourism companies must take this into account when formulating post-COVID-19 strategies, as regular guarantees will not be enough to attract customers.
Businesses should focus their efforts on ensuring health and hygiene procedures with contingency plans that should be known to the customers, thus building greater customer confidence.
“Once this type of procedure becomes the norm, customers can start to relax their need for guarantees. Until then, companies must address security issues in a confident manner,” he said.