The 2017 numbers are in, and we are currently experiencing the largest international tourism boom in seven years. South America is looking to capitalize on this by offering more flights to Jamaica from countries like Peru, Chile, and Argentina.
Jamaica is one of the countries experiencing this exciting boom, but that industry boost is mostly coming from the traditional markets of Canada, the United States, and Europe. South American countries represent one of the wealthiest tourism markets globally, and yet this particular market has proven tough for Jamaica to access.
In an effort to remedy this, Jamaica’s Tourism Minister, Hon. Edmund Bartlett accompanied a delegation, which included the country’s Chief Strategist and Advisor, Delano Seiveright, to travel to South America and meet with industry leaders in Argentina, Colombia, Peru, and Chile. After the trip was complete, the Minister reported that he could “safely say without any fear of contradiction that [they had] made that long-anticipated breakthrough into the South American market.”
Increased flights to Jamaica from South America
New developments brought about by the efforts of the Jamaican delegation will include:
- Argentinian airline, Copa, offering 11 new weekly flights into Jamaica – seven into Montego Bay and four into Kingston
- Chilean airline, LATAM, will offer 3 new flights into Jamaica
- Colombian airline, Avianca Colombia, will offer four weekly direct flights from Bogota to Jamaica by March 2019.
The Jamaican Tourism Board (JTB) plans to inform audiences of these new changes via an aggressive social media campaign so that travelers know that they can now more easily travel from South America to Jamaica for their vacations. Travelers can now catch a flight to Buenos Aires or Santiago and after a connector flight in Panama City, find themselves in Jamaica.
Chile and Argentina have shown to be strong markets, contributing 10,000 to the number of tourists visiting Jamaica last year. This year, Jamaica is hopeful to meet the goal of 20,000 (double!) tourists visiting by 2021. Now is the best time to include Jamaica into your travel itinerary.
Jamaica is an island surrounded by the Caribbean Sea, known for having fantastic white sand beaches. With an average temperature of 81 degrees, this island is especially popular among snowbirds, who wish to visit the beach and escape winter during the colder months back home.
Jamaica is full of street dancing, jerk chicken, and rich culture. In fact, it has one of the most popular and unique cultures in the world. Jerk chicken started in Jamaica, along with beef patties, and the country’s national dish: ackee and saltfish. Ackee is a fruit that can be fatal if eaten the wrong way. It has to open up on its own, and you have to eat only the yellow part of the fruit. It’s known for being quite bland, so that’s why the saltfish makes such a great addition to the dish. This dish is a must-try if you visit Jamaica.
Some of the popular sites include Jamaica’s Blue Lagoon, said to be one of the island’s most beautiful natural attractions, the Mountains of Ocho Rios, the Glistening Waters (a phosphorescent lagoon), and the Blue Mountains – which you might have heard of thanks to the famous Blue Mountain Coffee.
Jamaica has long been a popular travel destination, but it is especially popular now, thanks to its opening of several new (opened in the last couple of years) resorts. These feature unique bars, like Rick’s Café in Negril, which is located on the side of a cliff, or Floyd’s Pelican Bar, situated out on the water under a thatched roof. There is also a famous rum distillery, for rum fans to go and see how it’s made and to taste it as well.
There is no shortage of adventure in Jamaica, and now this country is finally more accessible than ever. Anyone traveling to South America can add a side trip to Jamaica to their vacation plans, or anyone who is now living or retired in South America can take a quick mini-vacation there pretty much any time the mood strikes.
While some of the new airlines will begin offering trips right away, others are setting plans in place to ensure that flights will be available in the near future. Wherever you are headed (or located), check with the airport to see if a side trip to Jamaica is feasible. There’s a reason why the island is so famous, after all! Don’t miss out on all that it has to offer.