TOURISM: Colombia, a tourist market with a bright future!


From February 20 to March 2, the Tourist Office carried out numerous promotional actions in Colombia, the second most populous country in South America. The destination ensured its visibility at the Vitrina Turistica ANATO trade fair and was presented to travel agencies and wholesalers during a major promotional tour.

With its 51 million inhabitants, Colombia has strong economic and demographic dynamism. South America is already a very important tourism market for Saint-Martin, our destination being well established in Brazilian travel catalogs. Colombia, on the other hand, is a more recent market that the Tourist Office wishes to develop, given the possibilities offered by Copa Airlines since the resumption of rotations  Panama (PTY) > SXM.

To position its offer and gain visibility on the Colombian market, the Tourist Office ensured its presence at the most important tourist event in the country: the Vitrina Turistica Tradeshow, organized by the Colombian Association of Tourism Agencies and trip (ANATO) to Bogota. From February 22 to 24, more than 1000 exhibitors and nearly 30.000 professional visitors met in a 13.000 m2 exhibition space where Saint-Martin had set up a beautifully decorated stand.

The promotion of the island with 37 beaches was carried out by Sacha Bresse, communication officer at the Tourist Office, with the support of Aviareps, the representative agency of Saint-Martin in Colombia. During the 3 days, around thirty meetings and several dozen visits to the stand made it possible to promote the destination to professionals and the local specialist press.


Colombian roadshow to promote Saint-Martin

The visit by the Tourist Office also included a promotional tour of around ten travel agencies and wholesalers. The presentation days followed one another in Bogota, Medellin (2nd city in Colombia) and Barranquilla (4th city), with the main players such as the Aviatur agency, the country's leading agency, or the tour operator CIC Travel, which had invited about sixty agents in Medellin and Barranquilla for a working lunch. “There is an important awareness to be made on the specificities of our destination, such as the dual nationality Saint-Martin/Sint Maarten” reports Sacha Bresse. “The island is perceived as a Caribbean territory, with a European touch and therefore with an image of very high prices. We had to convince that our destination remains accessible for Colombian customers, with a wide range of accommodation, activities and catering options, all with excellent connectivity thanks to Copa Airlines which serves 11 cities in Colombia, with a short stopover in Panama »

This series of meetings is already bearing fruit: training workshops for Colombian agents are already planned and several co-marketing campaigns are envisaged with local agencies. An important follow-up will be carried out by the Tourist Office to ensure that the main hotels of Saint-Martin are present on the sales platforms.

Investment in this market is backed up by statistics from Copa Airlines, which show strong development potential.

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