Nassau, The Bahamas – The islands of The Bahamas need more ‘visibility’ in the tourism arena. That much-needed visibility, according to Minister of Tourism, Obie Wilchcombe, will come via the social media. Mr. Wilchcombe made the statements while delivering the keynote address during a meeting held by the Bahamas Out Islands Promotion Board at the British Colonial Hilton on Wednesday, June 13.
“We have allowed our leadership in tourism to slip because we have rested on our laurels,” said Mr. Wilchcombe. “Over the course of the year, there well be many changes made in the promotion of our tourism product. One of the main vehicles we will use is technology – social media – to promote The Bahamas.”
He said that previous budget allocation for the promotion of the Family Islands was a mere $750,000, which is simply ‘not enough’ to properly highlight all that the country has to offer. An increase is expected during the next budget year.
“Using social media, each island will be featured in the language of the target country,” he said. “Consequentially, there will be many changes in the Ministry of Tourism in order to respond to the changing needs of our tourism industry. So there will be more focus on technology and we will start to recruit personnel to meet those needs. Each island must have an opportunity to showcase itself, so there will be greater demands placed on the staff of the Ministry in order to properly achieve our goals,”
Mr. Wilchcombe noted, however, that this would in no way mean that ‘jobs’ at the Ministry are in jeopardy. In fact, he explained, ‘all hands will be needed on deck’ in order to ensure success.
With 2013 marking the country’s 40th anniversary, Mr. Wilchcombe said that everything will be done to showcase The Bahamas and the world will be ‘invited’ to celebrate with Bahamians.
“We must lift our game to the levels of perfection. Excellence will be the order of the day in The Bahamas and we must all see ourselves as partners to uplift this country,” he said.
By Betty Vedrine
Bahamas Information Services