As Jamaica gears up for the start of the upcoming winter tourist season on December 15, the Ministry of Tourism and Entertainment and its agencies will be seeking to highlight the contribution of the sector and the role it plays in the economic development of the country, during Tourism Awareness Week (TAW), which will be observed from December 9 – 15.
This year the week will be observed under the theme: “Tourism for All: All for Tourism.” In this regard several activities have been planned across the island to increase awareness about tourism. The goal is to highlight the benefits of the industry for the entire nation, and garner the full support of all Jamaicans for tourism.
Minister of Tourism and Entertainment, the Hon. Dr. Wykeham McNeill, says, “this week is one of the most important periods observed on the local tourism calendar as it focuses on the Jamaican people and the important role that they must play in fostering the growth and development of the tourism sector.” He added that “we look forward to the observation of the week and expect to achieve our intended goal of building awareness about this all-important sector.”
The week’s activities commence with a Thanksgiving Service in Falmouth at the Trelawny Parish Church of St. Peter the Apostle on December 9. On Thursday December 13, Minister McNeill and tourism officials will meet with staff and officials of the Norman Manley International Airport and the Airports Authority of Jamaica to express appreciation for the significant contribution they have made to enhancing the experience of visitors to the island.
In keeping with this year’s theme of promoting all-inclusiveness in our approach to tourism, the media will play a major role and as such, a media tour has been organized for Friday, December 14. This is aimed at having members of the media fraternity experience firsthand the tourism product, and will entail a trip to key attractions in the ‘Garden Parish’ of St. Ann.
The week of activities will culminate with the official start of the Winter Tourist Season on December 15. A brief commemoration ceremony has been planned to celebrate the arrival of the first passenger for the season at the Sangster International Airport, in Montego Bay. Minister McNeill, accompanied by the Director of Tourism, John Lynch and other tourism officials are slated to be on hand to greet the passenger. The Minister and tourism officials will also meet with staff and officials of the airport and the Airports Authority of Jamaica to express appreciation for their contribution to the sector.