US Virgin Islands Hotel & Tourism Association
Following a meeting with the host committee in San Juan this week, the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association reported that demand among travel industry stakeholders to do business in the region was encouraging, given the continued interest and registration response for the annual event.
CHTA Director General Frank Comito said plans for Marketplace 2018, to be held from Jan. 30 to Feb. 1, were now in the advanced stages and the association was on track to eclipse the 1,000-delegate mark before the start of the event. “This speaks not only to the resilience of the Caribbean’s bread and butter tourism industry, but also to the fortitude of the Caribbean’s people,” Comito remarked before returning to CHTA’s headquarters in Miami.
Comito observed Puerto Rico, which was among the islands impacted by September’s two Category 5 hurricanes, is on the rebound and more than ready to host this year’s edition of Caribbean Travel Marketplace. “It is remarkable what the good people at the Puerto Rico Convention Center District Authority, the Puerto Rico Tourism Company, Meet Puerto Rico, and the Puerto Rico Hotel and Tourism Association have been able to accomplish as they prepare to welcome this marquee event to their island,” he said.
Close to 500 supplier delegates from more than 200 companies across 30 countries will join another 100-plus media representatives at this year’s event.
More than 200 delegates from close to 100 buyer companies, 19 of which are new to the conference, including four new MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions) companies, have registered. Buyer companies hail from Argentina, the Bahamas, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Mexico, Peru, Puerto Rico, Spain, the United Kingdom, the United States and Uruguay.
“And there’s still more than a week to register,” said Comito, as he encouraged more attendees to leverage the networking opportunities at the event, where buyers (e.g. tour operators, online travel agents and MICE planners) are matched with Caribbean suppliers (e.g. hotels, tour companies and tourism departments) during a busy two-day program featuring thousands of pre-scheduled appointments.
Caribbean Travel Marketplace is produced by CHTA in collaboration with the Puerto Rico Convention Center District Authority, the Puerto Rico Tourism Company, Meet Puerto Rico, and the Puerto Rico Hotel and Tourism Association.
The event opens on the evening of Jan. 30 and is preceded by educational sessions earlier in the day. For more information, visit www.chtamarketplace.com or call 305-443-3040. Details about registration can be found at https://www.chtamarketplace.com/registration-fees.