The Caribbean is made up of beautiful natural wonders and rich culture. There's simply plenty for tourists to do, which also means that there are a lot of opportunities for local tour and activity operators to grow and expand their businesses.
Here are 5 growth opportunities you can start working on today as a tour operator in the Caribbean.
1. Responsible tourism
Responsible tourism is growing as more and more travellers want to travel in an ethical, eco-friendly and sustainable way. The truth is: many people want to do good, even when they travel.
To stand out from the crowd and attract this niche market, incorporate sustainable and ethical elements into your tours.
You could donate a portion of your profits to local conservation bodies, just like Natural Greece does, or partner with an NGO that works to solve a problem affecting your community. You can also get your tours certified by The International Ecotourism Society.
2. Experiential tourism
When travelling, some tourists want to learn as much as they can about a local culture, its history and its traditions. They also want to experience the destination like a local, or have a chance to meet local people, make new friends and do things that locals would do. To appeal to these travellers, aim to bring your cultures alive for visitors in unique and personal ways.
You could start a cooking class that includes a trip to the local market to learn about produce unique to the destination, or bring your guests to an art class or a salsa night. Tell stories about your childhood, the traditions you observe, and why they mean so much to you.
3. Soft adventure travel
Instead of bungee jumping off a cliff or trekking for 3 days, more travellers are looking for less extreme outdoor activities such as zip-lining, kayaking, or day trips to lush waterfalls. If you operate in an up-and-coming destination within the Caribbean, this is a great time to capitalise on the activities you offer.
Showcase your activities with beautiful videos and pictures. Social media is an especially good way to get customers interested in your activities before they've even arrived.
Read our previous post about how to sell more activities via social media here.
4. Family fun in the Caribbean
Multi-generational travel is also growing. Many 21st century families rarely get vacation time, so when they do get time off, family members want to spend quality time with each other. Have a look at your tourism products and highlight two or three tours that would be suitable for families to join.
When discussing tours and activities with your customers, be flexible and allow your customers to create an itinerary that would be suitable for everyone present. If you have a website, be sure to highlight if a tour is "family friendly" in the tour description.
5. Luxury travel
As to be expected, the Caribbean comes to mind for those looking for a truly luxurious travel experience as well. From luxury resorts to private beaches, the Caribbean is filled with plenty of options for big spenders to enjoy a good dose of extravagance.
You can benefit from this by partnering up with hotels and resorts in your destination to promote your tours or activities, and you can also adapt your tours for a luxurious traveller with these 5 tips.
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Published by Nicole Kow
Having graduated from the UK, Nicole travelled around Europe before joining TrekkSoft's marketing team. She is now based in KL and regularly blogs about her travels at Next Train Out.