Event Blog

    JAPEX Live 2020: "Safecation" in Jamaica

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    The 30th edition of JAPEX (Jamaica Product Exchange) happened from November 9-10, 2020 and TravelPulse Canada had the chance to participate in the event, which was held for virtually this year.

    As usual, the event brings together the best of hotels and attractions Jamaica has to offer, along with several partners including travel agents to enable them to develop new products and know how to better sell the destination.

    “JAPEX is the most important trade fair in our industry because Jamaica depends on tourism for a living, and this is where our partners meet and build relationships,” said Angella Bennett, director of the industry. Jamaica Tourism Board in Canada.

    “We are really trying to deploy the best that Jamaica has to offer this winter under the exceptional circumstances of COVID and demonstrate what we are doing with our protocols to welcome our guests in a transparent and safe manner.”

    During the event, the 2,000 or so participating travel agents learned more about the famous "resilient corridor" established by the Jamaican government.

    “The resilient corridor runs from Negril to Port Antonio and along the coast and it contains all of the hotels along this coast that have been approved under the COVID resilient corridor. So they are all certified, all approved, and all follow the same protocols. We also have a corridor on the south coast and in the corporate sector in Kingston. Protocols have been established, staff are trained and are equipped to deal with any situation that may arise.

    “One thing we would like to highlight is that inside this hallway, where the protocols for hotels and attractions are located, we have no known cases of COVID, which means our protocols are working. We are very proud of that,”said Bennett.

    Another advantage of staying in this corridor is that tourists do not have to quarantine themselves upon arrival.

    “After you check in, you go to your hotel, have a good time, and you can book combo stays in this corridor. You are also allowed to enjoy the attractions that are part of this corridor. It's the safe space for people to have what we call 'safecations'. ”

    Open to tourism since June 15, Jamaica welcomed some 200,011 international tourists between January and September 2020, which generated tourism revenue of around USD $231 million.

    Of this number, approximately 8,400 visitors came from Canada, the second largest international market for the destination. Of course, these numbers cannot compare to those of last year (4.3 million international visitors, including nearly 450,000 Canadians), but Bennett is optimistic about the recovery in tourism and the market. Canadian.

    “Because Canada is one of the countries at low risk of contracting COVID 19, Canadian visitors do not have to show proof of a negative PCR test for COVID upon arrival.”

    However, all visitors, including Canadians, must complete a Jamaica travel authorization request form no later than five days before arriving on the island.

    A new comprehensive insurance plan covering COVID as well as other events up to natural disasters (Jamaica Cares) will also be mandatory for visitors from the end of November. It will cost around $ 52 per person.

    Regarding air service, all major Canadian carriers have resumed or are preparing to resume their routes to Jamaica for the winter from Montreal, Toronto and Calgary, bringing the number of seats available to approximately 450,000.

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