Growth from Canada this winter and a focus on festivals and events are among the highlights for the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) in 2020, as the year is already off to a strong start.
The JTB brought the heat to the Scotiabank Arena last night (Feb. 11) at a VIP event for the board’s travel partners, as the Toronto Maple Leafs took on the Arizona Coyotes. This marks the second season that the JTB has partnered with Maple Leaf Sports Entertainment to promote the Jamaica brand to hockey fans; the JTB’s partnership with the Leafs also resulted in one lucky couple winning a trip to Jamaica.
“It’s been a great partnership,” said Donnie Dawson, deputy director of tourism for the JTB, who was in attendance. “Because Canadians love hockey, we’re here to convince Canadians that we care about the game they love.”
The Heartbeat of the World
The game took place as Jamaica’s latest tourism campaign, titled ‘Heartbeat of the World,’ rolls out across Canada, enticing Canadian travellers to head to Jamaica with a collage of the destination’s culture, cuisine and music.
“The response has been fantastic,” said Angella Bennett, the JTB’s regional director for Canada. “The colours, the vibe, the energy – it’s really hitting all the pillars that we want to hit. It’s connecting to the audience that we’re looking to reach and we’re extremely pleased. We’re now on television in Canada and on all social media; we’ve received such positive response.”
And already, Jamaica is seeing a return to growth from Canada, recording a two per cent year-over-year increase in arrivals in January. While Bennett said that growth from Canada in 2020 “may not be through the roof, it’s going to climb over time as we build a new Jamaica with new offerings.”
This year will also see the JTB increase their focus on promoting Jamaica’s culture through festivals and events happening throughout the year, all of which will be compiled on a new events calendar, providing agents and their clients with new ideas for Jamaica vacations.
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