Tag Archives: Travel

Exclusive Breaking: UK Travel Agent now selling St. Lucia holidays “10 to 1” over Barbados!

In a stunning reversal of the way things were only six months ago, travel agent Sandra McLeavy of Holiday Experts says she is now selling St. Lucia holidays over Barbados ten to one in favour of St. Lucia!

Ms. McLeavy attributes the turnabout to a heavy tourism campaign by St. Lucia and some changes over the last little while in Barbados. As Ms. McLeavy has visited Barbados some 13 times, we Bajans and the Barbados Tourism Authority might want to at the very least give her views a read. Continue reading

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Say Hello to Sophie & Joe – Having a great time in Barbados

Read their blog, give them a wave and buy Joe a Banks!

We stumbled across Adventures & Misadventures of Joe and Sophie, the blog of two Americans who are taking a break in Barbados to get away from the snows of Chicago. Monday will be their fifth day on the island and by the look of their blog Joe and Sophie are having a great time.

The only small “problem” they encountered was when Joe needed a cold beer and couldn’t find one. (He should have shouted out in Grape Hall and we would have been happy to help him out!)

Their blog has some excellent photos and stories of their first days in Barbados and some interesting tales from their last vacation to Vietnam.

Why not stop by their blog and let them know how much we appreciate them choosing Barbados for their annual vacation… Adventures & Misadventures of Joe and Sophie

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Tourism, Travel, Traveling and Tourism

Six weeks later: Still no Spanish, Portuguese language welcome on Barbados Tourism or Investment & Development websites.

Stephen-Lashley

MP Stephen Lashley wants to make BTA overcome 'island time' performance.

Last week the government member for Christ Church West Central, Stephen Lashley, stood up in Parliament and talked about the need for Barbados to tap into new international markets for tourism and industry. As tactfully as possible (considering he is a member of the government), Mr. Lashley made the point that our Barbados Tourism Authority and Barbados Investment and Development Corporation aren’t doing nearly the job that they should be doing.

To be fair, Lashley talked about “encouraging” the BTA and BIDC and being positive about their efforts. He also chided the Opposition for being “negative” as he delivered the traditional Bajan milquetoast speech about “what we’re gonna do” etc etc etc. His central message for those listening at the BTA and BIDC came through though: “FOR GOD’S SAKE JUST BLOODY-WELL DO SOMETHING!”

Good luck with your encouragement, Mr. Lashley. Just don’t hold your breath waiting for results.

Let’s get real for a minute, shall we?

Over six weeks ago, Minister of International Business and International Transport George Hutson gave a press conference where he mused about the possibilities of targeting South American markets to fill the tourism void during the “off” season – and to try to raise some new business opportunities.

At that time Barbados Free Press said that IF the government and the Minister were serious about South America, they would already have ordered Spanish and Portuguese language options on the websites of the Barbados Tourism Authority and the Barbados Investment and Development Corporation. We said it would take a week, maybe two, to translate both websites, put up a welcome in Spanish and Portuguese and at least look like we mean business.

We also predicted that it wouldn’t happen. We said…

“Oh well, not to get upset about it because the truth is that nothing will be done.

The Minister spoke a fine little speech, and the newspaper printed a fine little article and editorial.

That’s it, folks. That’s all you’ll see. This is Barbados and we do – or don’t do – things a certain way.”

We were correct. Here we are six weeks later and nothing was done. The BTA and BIDC websites are still in English only.

See? We told ya that nothing would be done!

Adrian Loveridge

Adrian Loveridge: Hotel owners have been asking for Spanish/Portuguese BTA website for 10 years!

After all, the Barbados Tourism Authority failed to establish Spanish, Portuguese language websites despite 10 years of begging by hotel owners.

Why should anything change now?

Please have a read of our original story and we’ll see you again in another six weeks and every six weeks thereafter until all those concerned become embarrassed enough to make it happen – if such a thing is possible in the cushy government service. I tell you the truth friends – very few in the BTA or BIDC would last a week in a similar position in London or New York.

Barbados Tourism Authority failed to establish Spanish, Portuguese language websites despite 10 years of begging by hotel owners

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Swine Flu Scare Decimates International Travel – Barbados Suffers With Other Prime Destinations

Swine Flu = Empty Airplanes

Swine Flu = Empty Airplanes

“Dear Barbados Free Press,

It has been nothing but cancellations all day at the Hilton…”

Government Implements Watch At Grantley Adams Airport – Not Much Else To Be Done

No man and no nation can control the wind, tides and the seas. And so it is with swine flu. Nothing that Barbados did contributed to the outbreak, and little that Barbados does will matter on an international scale. Our government has instituted a watch at Grantley Adams international Airport, but realistically that is about all that can be done.

Shona’s little brother works at the airport and he says that passenger pickups are down by half as of today. An anonymous reader tells us that the staff at the Hilton were on the phone all day taking cancellations — not only from individuals, but also from group bookings.

It may take a few weeks or even a month, but this will pass.

As we said before, when times are tough — be frugal, and look after your family and friends because you never know when you might need a little help yourself.

Further Reading

Barbados Advocate: Barbados on alert!

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Layne Redman: A Bajan Finds Himself Living In Dubai

barbados-dubai-redman

Bajans Here, Bajans There… Bajans Everywhere!

It is said that wherever you go in the world you will find a fellow Bajan, and Layne Redmond is one more proof of that old truism. Redman has lived in London, New York, Boston and for the last six years, Dubai. He makes it home to Barbados about once every six months and maintains a house here for family and friends.

One thing that strikes me as different about Mr. Redman is his worldview – no doubt a result of his traveling and living in many places. I have found that those who do not get off this island once in a while to visit the larger world suffer from a kind of myopic vision. I’m sure that many of you know exactly what I mean. Here is what Mr. Redmond has to say about his adventures in the world. You can read his full interview in Abu Dhabi’s The National newspaper, linked at the end of the quote…

“Here, I’ve found out so much about other nationalities and I’ve been invited to so many different places. I like to mix and blend with everyone; it’s a skill of mine to be comfortable in any environment. I don’t feel that I have to stick to my own kind. It jars with me when people only see things in black and white and aren’t willing to experience different ways of living. I’ve seen it in England and many other places.”

… Read the full article in The National article “I can set up anywhere.”

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Filed under Barbados, Culture & Race Issues, Tourism, Travel, Traveling and Tourism

Barbados Tourism Disaster On The “Platinum” West Coast

“The old people in Barbados used to say that if it rained on New Years Day it will rain all year. Well, we had a lot of rain here on the west coast on New Years Day and if the old people are right, a lot of people are going to get soaked in 2009.”… West Coast Blog article Nearly Half The Villas At Four Seasons Still Unsold

West Coast Blog Says Hotel Guests Down 70% At Almond Beach Village!

Our friends over at West Coast Blog (WCB) have their finger on the pulse of “Platinum Coast” tourism and they say that the patient is in critical condition – nevermind that this is the “high season”. WCB cites a number of statistics and it is obvious they have insider knowledge about hotel occupancy rates and condo sales figures. Today’s article makes a compelling case that all those happy, optimistic articles we’ve been reading in the Barbados media are not exactly the real picture.

Folks, as we said in mid-December, 2009 is going to be a brutal year for tourism. You should be putting your personal emergency plan into action NOW! As we said in our article You Can Taste The Fear In Barbados – Travel Poised to “drop off a cliff” in January, there are steps you should be taking…

– Shun debt.

– Work hard.

– Economise.

– Maintain friends and family. Look after them and they will look after you.

Things are bad, and they will get worse. A lot worse. Look after your friends and family because it could be you next.

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Business, Offshore Investments, Tourism, Travel, Traveling and Tourism

Hiking In Barbados – Boston Globe Dubs Adrian Loveridge “Successor to Colin Hudson as the articulator of Barbadian Byways”

barbados-boston-globeWho would have guessed that a 21-by-14-mile island could seem so large and varied? The meandering quality of the roads contributes to a perennial sense of discovery – and to the frequent experience of getting lost.

“Every road in Barbados leads to your destination – eventually,” Thomas Loftfield, an assistant director at the Barbados Museum, said reassuringly. The museum’s collection of early maps clarifies why this is so. By 1645, English settlers had almost completely deforested Barbados and replanted it with sugarcane, which would drive the economy for the next 350 years. Today’s roads and public rights of way are a web of those 17th-century cart paths and cane field intervals.

If there is a successor to Colin Hudson as the articulator of Barbadian byways, Adrian Loveridge might be it. “It’s almost painful to reveal the spectacular beaches encountered on this hike,” said Loveridge as we picked our way along five miles of the East Coast from Bottom Bay to Crane Beach in St. Philip Parish…

… from a staff-written major article in the Boston Globe Barbados – Measured By The Foot

Richard Goddard, Victor Cooke, George Medford, Carl Fenty, Thomas Loftfield Receive Honourable Mentions

“Pure air, pristine beaches, and miles of byways make hiking eye-opening…”

If I were freezing in Boston at this moment in January and read the article in the Boston Globe, I would quit my job, pick up the phone and call my travel agent for a Barbados trip.

You simply must read this major article and you will know who are our best ambassadors for tourism.

People come to Barbados for the experience and the people. They DON’T come to Barbados to see a wall of condos like you can see in hundreds of other places around the Caribbean – including (unfortunately) on our West coast. They call it the “Platinum Coast” of Barbados, but I call it the “Concrete Coast”.

What of Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary & National Park?

A damned shame that the article can’t mention the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary and National Park. Does anyone know anything different than the place is now well and truly dead?

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Environment, Nature, Real Estate, Tourism, Travel, Traveling and Tourism, Wildlife