Unlike its neighbours in the Caribbean, St. Kitts isn’t quite yet ready to welcome back international travellers. Racquel Brown, CEO of the St. Kitts Tourism Authority, said the destination remains closed for air and commercial traffic and no official date has been set for reopening in part because its tourism offer is designed to get travellers to explore beyond the confines of hotels and resorts.
“One of the reasons is we had no deaths and we only had 15 cases. A lot of the other Caribbean islands that are reopening before us, they have one or two different types of tourism product, neither of which we have,” Brown tells Canadian Travel Press. “They either have all-inclusive resorts — and there are no all-inclusive properties in St. Kitts — or they are like The Bahamas, where they have Atlantis and Baha Mar, where basically all of the needs of the visitors can be met on the resort — retail, restaurants, snack bars, entertainment. Specifically for St. Kitts & Nevis, we are a destination that you stay in your hotel and it has several restaurants, but we want you to go out and explore the destination.”
In anticipation of reopening sometime in late summer/early fall, Brown says those in travel and tourism in St. Kitts are focused on making sure the industry will be ready across all sectors when the time comes.
“It can’t be like the other destinations where they are actually discouraging visitors to leave the hotel — that’s not what we want to do,” she says. “We’re a little delayed behind other Caribbean countries, but for that legit reason that our tourism is a little different. It’s a traditional tourism product and we want to make sure that when the visitors come they’re not deprived of the experiences we’ve been selling and marketing in the industry.”
For more, check out this week’s issue of Canadian Travel Press.