|Tourism Seychelles has declared its intention to tap deeper into the Baltics region, as the latter has shown great potential to grow into a valuable source market for the Seychelles.
This was said by Tourism Seychelles’ Director for Russia, CIS and Eastern Europe, Mrs Lena Hoareau, following the destination’s recent participation at the Baltics Roadshow held in Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia from May 24 to 26, 2022.
Mrs Hoareau pointed out that despite being a small market, the Baltics can produce a larger number of visitors to Seychelles with the right activities and awareness initiatives.
It is to be noted that when Seychelles re-opened its borders in March 2021, following the Covid-19 pandemic, many small markets, including Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, amongst others, helped to fill the bed nights in Seychelles.
Seychelles had the golden advantage, not only because it was amongst the few destinations to re-open early but also because the destination is adequately known in these markets.
“I believe we have come to appreciate those smaller markets more, and it has made us realise their potential for growth. More importantly, it has proved that marketing activities carried out in those markets in the past years have been beneficial to the country and even more reason now why we should tap deeper in this region,” said Mrs Hoareau.
The Baltics Roadshow started with a workshop in Vilnius, then proceeded to Riga and Tallinn. During the three days of meetings and presentations, the exhibitors met over 50 agents in each city as well as engaged in different networking sessions, either during the event itself or on the side.
Besides Mrs Hoareau, Tourism Seychelles was also represented by the Senior Marketing Executive for these markets, Mrs Natacha Servina. Another local company promoting their business at the roadshow was Destination Management Company 7 South, represented by Ms Janet Rampal.
Mrs Hoareau said they also conducted a few sales calls outside the event, which allowed them to visit some of the leading Tour Operators on the market, renew relationships and discuss new marketing collaborations for 2022-2023. Besides a couple of FAM trips planned for the second half of the year, they will also engage in powerful online promotions and tactical campaigns to create more awareness of the destination.
Mrs Hoareau also made mention of agents’ incentives, which would motivate the travel agents to push and recommend Seychelles more. She added that now that almost all destinations have fully re-opened, the competition is stronger, and Seychelles has to compete for a greater share of the outbound market.
“We are realistic that our numbers will not grow in hundreds overnight, but we are hoping that the activities we have planned and discussed with our partners will make Seychelles more known on the market, more desirable and one of the Top 3 long-haul destinations being sought after. In other words, Seychelles should be one of the destinations trending in this region when the new booking season starts soon,” she noted.
“Our partners are willing to join us in our drive to push Seychelles to the next level in those three markets, and here, we shall be targeting both the trade and consumers. We want to see more firm bookings translating from the many queries they get on Seychelles and definitely more people considering the destination for their next holiday,” concluded Mrs Hoareau.