The Belize Hotel Association is held its bi-annual general meeting on Friday at the Belize Biltmore Hotel. Hoteliers from across the country have gathered to hear how the industry has been doing over the past year and where the industry is headed to in the future. Love News spoke to Ted Tejada, President of the Association and he said there has been an increase in visitors to Belize and some of the statistics show that new airlines to Belize have contributed significantly to overnight bookings. He adds that the coming year is going to be “another exciting year”, especially since the BHA started much of its marketing campaigns since July.
Ted Tejada President: “What the airlines actually do is open a door to Belize. We have seen that historically the minute you have a direct flight from any destination in anywhere in the world that market will increase tremendously. One of the things that we have to do is look at those destinations that have a direct flight to Belize and start making a marketing plan that includes a destination so that we should be starting 6 months in advance doing marketing so when the airlines starts coming to Belize we can capture it immediately. The numbers speak for themself. I think we have about 17.6% percent growth this year compared to last year, the same 11 months and that is all attributed to the new airlines that have been coming in, it brings in more people, there is more capacity. I was looking at the statistics that every month for December alone we have a 10% increase in capacity and in airspace coming in. In February next year there is a projected 20% increase of seats for Belize.”
Dalilah Ical: “Would you say that this is better than in the past?”
Ted Tejada President:“It has never been better, let’s put it that way.”
Tejada said that ten additional regular flights have been coming to Belize over the past year. He added that they have seen “tremendous” growth so far in the Canadian and EU markets due to new airlines. With the new flight arriving from Mexico, the Association is looking forward to greater numbers of tourists from that country. But improvements have also been registered in the services provided.
Ted Tejada President: “The BTB has been working on new regulations and new standardizations . The Hotel Association as well as the Belize Tourism Industry Association, we are all in encouraging our members that we will need to look at our standardizations and adapt them in our hotels for the simple reason that the more and the better your hotels are the more welcoming it is for your guests and the more return guests we will have because then they will feel like there is some types of standards in the entire country of Belize. And being that this is the fastest growing sector in Central America; Belize is the fastest growing destination, we need to set the standard so that the guests that are coming here can say you know what I feel safe in Belize, the regulations are there and so definitely we do encourage every hotel to abide by the laws and the regulations that BTB is actually putting out there.”
Tejada says moving forward, they are expecting an approximate ten percent growth. About 100 Association members attended today’s event.