A & B TO BENEFIT FROM EUROPEAN BUSINESS Thursday 15th March 2018
St. John’s, Antigua (March14, 2018) - Two major European tourism companies have decided to add Antigua and Barbuda as one of their preferred high end destinations, starting in the 2018/2019 season.
The agreement comes following the visit of a high powered European Tourism Delegation to Antigua and Barbuda in January, led by Honorary Counsel to Bavaria Germany, His Excellency Wolfgang Altmüller and hosted by the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority and the Ministry of Tourism, Foreign Affairs and Immigration. The visit was initiated by Ambassador at Large His Excellency Dr. Patrick Matthews.
H.E. Wolfgang Altmüller presents Prime Minister Gaston Browne with a check in the amount of US$100,000 to assist in the ongoing post hurricane rebuilding efforts in Barbuda
H.E. Wolfgang Altmüller made the announcement after meetings with Prime Minister The Honourable Gaston Brown, Sir Lester Bird, the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority and local stake holders in the tourism industry, and is an indicator of the Government’s ongoing efforts and progress in increasing European tourist arrivals.
After an absence of three years TUI Cruises confirms that it has added St. John's, Antigua back to its 14 day Caribbean itinerary. With 13 transit calls in the winter season of 2019/20, approximately 38,000 TUI Cruises passengers are expected to visit Antigua on board the Mein Schiff fleet. TUI has indicated that this will result in at least US$1 million in revenue for Antigua, in addition to revenue generated in onshore spending by visitors on tours and onshore purchases.
TUI Cruises was a frequent caller to Antigua between the winter seasons of 2009/2015. Approximately 110,000 TUI Cruises passengers visited Antigua on Mein Schiff 1, Mein Schiff 2 and Mein Schiff 3 during those six winter seasons. With a fleet of six ships altogether, the Caribbean and most definitively Antigua continues to play in important role as a winter destination for TUI Cruises.
After their recent visit TUI executives are of the opinion that TUI passengers can look forward to a great variety of experiences and activities during their vacation cruise experience, not only concerning the offers presented on board of the TIU ships but more so through the great variety and quality of on-island activities in Antigua.
TUI indicated that Antigua has been a great partner in previous seasons and they are looking forward to expanding that partnership in the future, as the destination proceeds with tourist product and seaport expansions.
FTI Touristik, one of Germany's biggest travel companies also confirmed that they have added Antigua to their destination portfolio. This announcement will signal an expected increase in European visitors.
Starting with their 2019 winter catalog, FTI will prominently feature and promote Antigua as one of their exclusive high end Caribbean destinations.
FTI Touristik is currently in the process of assessing hotel properties in Antigua, as well as evaluating and selecting the destination management companies that will be entrusted with their clients in the upcoming 2018/2019 season.
While the visit of the European delegation has resulted in the return of TUI cruises and the entry of Antigua and Barbuda as an FTI destination, the focus is currently on increasing direct air links from Europe to facilitate increased winter season arrivals, while establishing an avenue to initiate growth in the European summer season arrivals to Antigua and Barbuda.
Ambassador Matthews will travel to Germany next to facilitate further negotiations on establishing Antigua as a Cruise ship home porting destination ,as well as year round destination with direct flights originating from Frankfurt and Munich Germany via European based airlines including TUI Airways and Condor.
Antigua and Barbuda was recently represented in Germany by the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority and other tourism stakeholders at ITB Berlin.
During his January visit to Antigua H.E. Wolfgang Altmüller also presented Prime Minister Gaston Browne with a check in the amount of US$100,000 to assist in the ongoing post hurricane rebuilding efforts in Barbuda. The donation came in response to a request for assistance to the Munich based Honorary Consul by Senior Minister Sir Lester Bird. The funds were transferred into the designated National Office of Disaster Services account on February 5, 2018.
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