Jamaica Product Exchange: A Huge Success and Tourism Boost
November 12, 2020 Admin
|The 30th staging of the annual Jamaica Product Exchange (JAPEX), held virtually for the first time, was a huge success. As the two-day event took place online this year, it allowed for greater participation from all corners of the globe.|
|Hosted on November 9 and 10, the industry trade show brought together a record number of delegates from the United States, Canada, Latin America, Europe and Asia. JAPEX Live 2020 recorded more than 2,500 registrations, including 2,000 travel agents, 250 tour operators, 140 supplier companies, 280 supplier delegates, 251 buyer delegates and 158 journalists. The destination’s resilience, commitment to recovery, and continued innovation and development throughout the pandemic were a significant theme throughout the event.|
“The success of this first fully virtual trade show is great news and speaks to the innovation that has been at the forefront of the tourist industry in Jamaica as we prepare for the recovery and beyond,” said Edmund Bartlett, Jamaica’s Minister of Tourism.
“We’re pleased with the participation and support from international delegates for this virtual staging of the island’s leading travel trade show,” added Donovan White, Jamaica’s Director of Tourism. “It’s encouraging that, since reopening the destination in June, we have welcomed over 211,000 visitors.”
Throughout the event, delegates attended dozens of destination training and breakout sessions, learning about the island and setting up one-on-one business appointments via the digital platform. Breakout sessions and training seminars boasted record-breaking attendance, with 3,960 users tuning in for the on-demand breakout presentations and 1,986 engaged in training sessions. Booth visits were in excess of 25,000 and JAPEX LIVE saw an overwhelming 14,000 shares of content across the platform. Participants also had the opportunity to explore the island’s various resort areas using an interactive Google map.
Below are some of the tourism development highlights discussed at the conference:
- Most of the major airlines serving the destination, including American Airlines, Delta, JetBlue, United, Southwest, Air Canada, WestJet and Copa, are increasing service as the demand picks up.
- British Airways started twice-weekly service to Montego Bay from London Gatwick. Virgin Atlantic returned to Jamaica last month, with service from Heathrow to Montego Bay.
- A new Linkages Centre of Excellence, on the site of the Shoppes at Rose Hall, will provide visitors with a place that showcases the best of Jamaica combining gastronomy, a craft market, health and wellness options and local entertainment.
- In Montego Bay, the 1,700-room Hard Rock Resort, located on the Elegant Corridor, will be laid out and construction will begin soon. The SeaGarden Beach Resort, located near the Hip Strip is adding an additional 800 rooms to their beachfront all-inclusive property.
- In Trelawny, Oceans by H10 is adding a 440-room property and the Royalton Group is building two more resorts totalling 1,200 rooms.
- In Ocho Rios, Karisma Hotels & Resorts has begun phase one of the Sugarcane property with 700 rooms. Phase two will add another 3,800, bringing the total room count to 4,500.
- In Kingston, renovations are underway for the ROK – Kingston, the 168-room property overlooking downtown Kingston’s waterfront, which will be managed by Hilton through its Tapestry Collection.
For more information on Jamaica’s tourism industry, visit www.jtbonline.org.