State of Emergency not affecting visitor bookings – Bartlett
Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett says the declaration of the state of public emergency in St James has not affected travel bookings to Jamaica.
Speaking on the subject this morning at the quarterly press briefing hosted by Prime Minister Andrew Holness, Bartlett said the most that has been seen so far is some skittishness, but there hasn't been any fall off in bookings to the island.
At an event to launch Reggae Month on Monday, the tourism minister said there hasn't been any widescale cancellations either as the attractions and hotels are still filled with visitors.
He explained that the security operations this time around is different as it is focused on stemming the crime problem to make the destination safer for citizens and visitors.
The government declared a public state of emergency in St James last Thursday in response to the escalating crime rate in the parish.
Bartlett says tourism officials have been meeting with overseas partners to craft a comprehensive strategy to ensure that there is no fallout.
He says the strategy being crafted now is aimed at bookings for the summer and fall periods since arrivals for the winter season remain strong.