The Seychelles official delegation who attended the 2012 World Travel Market (WTM)
The Seychelles official delegation who attended the 2012 World Travel Market (WTM) left London saying that the high-level meetings held with airline and tour operator partners show that Seychelles is starting to see light at the end of the tunnel with regards to the UK market.
Tour operators have expressed their continued confidence in the Seychelles as a holiday destination.
Seychelles clearly remains a favourite destination for the British travellers and the trade is more confident than ever before that the market will bounce back and regain its former glory as one of the top four markets for the destination.
UK, like the rest of Europe, has seen their figures struggling since the drop of direct non-stop flights from Europe, but a market recovery is clearly underway as the majority of tour operators confirm that forward bookings are looking better than previous months.
The Seychelles’ Minister for Tourism and Culture, Alain St Ange, who was heading the country’s delegation at the annual trade fair in London, has said he was pleased to hear that the UK trade is continuing to push to sell the destination.
“I am very happy to hear that the UK trade not only still believes in us, but that it is pushing harder than ever before for the destination. We have some new tour operators on board and several others who have expressed their desire to also start selling Seychelles, which means Seychelles has the appeal and still comes across as a preferred destination to many UK travellers,” said Minister St Ange.
“I am confident, as is the trade, that business will pick up on this market. We may not have a direct flight at the moment but I must stress that Seychelles is more accessible than ever before in its history. I believe we shall once again find our real place in the UK market,” the minister said.
Minister St Ange has also described WTM 2012 as one of his best due to the high level of interest in the destination, particularly from the press and also other organisations and countries who want to cooperate with Seychelles in the field of tourism.
“It is clear today Seychelles is in the press everywhere and the more visible we become, the more the press wants to know about us. We have had some very important interviews and meetings with the world press at this year’s WTM, and this will continue to generate the interest in the destination,” he said.
Minister St Ange added that he also met with several of his counterparts and discussed possibilities for cooperation between the different countries.
Seychelles was again represented at UK’s biggest tourism fair by a team from the Seychelles Tourism Board and members of the trade, including 7°South, Air Seychelles, Banyan Tree Seychelles, Berjaya Beau Vallon Bay Resort & Casino, Cerf Island Resort, Coco De Mer Hotel, Coral Stand Smart Choice Hotel, Creole Travel Services, Hilton Seychelles Resort, Kempinski Seychelles Resort, Mason’s Travel, Paradise Sun, Raffles Praslin, Round Island Resort (Mahe) and Beachcomber Sainte Anne Resort.
Miss Seychelles … another world 2012, Sherlyn Furneau, also joined the delegation in her role as ambassador for the Seychelles islands and it was an opportunity for her to learn more of the travel industry.
The Seychelles Tourism Board was represented by its chief executive Elsia Grandcourt, along her senior staff Philomena Hollanda who was representing the Seychelles Sustainable Tourism Label in partnership with the UNDP organisation, Seychelles director for Europe, Bernadette Willemin; manager PR & News Bureau UK & Ireland, Lena Hoareau; senior marketing executive for UK & Ireland, Maria Morel; marketing executive Eloise Vidot; principal of the Seychelles Tourism Academy, Flavien Joubert; the special adviser to the Minister for Tourism and Culture, Raymonde Onezime.