Tue | Dec 12, 2017

Communities being prepared to capitalise on experiential tourism

Published:Wednesday | November 29, 2017 | 12:55 PM
Visitors take photos of the statue Redemption Song at the Emancipation Park in Kingston. – File Photo

The Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) says it has been preparing rural communities to take advantage of the growth in experiential or community-based tourism.

Tourism specialist at JSIF, Beverly Stewart, says the agency has been preparing communities through the Rural Economic Development Initiative (REDI), by providing advice and toolkits to allow persons in communities to capitalise on opportunities created by community-based tourism.

Stewart says experiential tourism is one of the fastest growing segments in the sector, at 15-20 per cent.

This is compared to the sun, sand and sea segment which is growing at between three and four per cent.

She was speaking during a panel discussion on community tourism during a session of the United Nations World Tourism Organization Global Conference on Jobs and Inclusive Growth now underway at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in St James.

Meanwhile, Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett says the government has been putting in measures to grow community-based tourism in Jamaica, whose sector is predominantly based on the all-inclusive model.

He says efforts are underway to facilitate greater linkage between the island's business sector and tourism sector in order to derive more benefits for the economy.