Seychelles joins the Rebuilding Travel conversation with travel specialist Juergen Steinmetz.

The global virtual event, which is part of the Rebuilding Travel movement, was held on Tuesday, August 11, 2020, and attended by tourism professionals from across the globe. The discussions held via the zoom network was focused on the restart of tourism in Seychelles and hosted by Juergen Steinmetz.

The Minister for Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports and Marine, Mr Didier Dogley, Seychelles Hospitality & Tourism Association (SHTA) chairperson, Mrs Sybille Cardon and Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) Chief Executive, Mrs Sherin Francis represented the key stakeholders in the local industry.

During the discussions, Minister Dogley, provided a brief overview of the how the destination is handling the restart of tourism since June 1, 2020, when the country opened its borders for private jets and private charters to August 1, 2020, when the first commercial flight landed at the Seychelles international airport of Pointe Larue.

He further commented on the efforts made by the industry to implement the new safety guidelines endorsed by the Department of Health as part of the new operational procedures for the tourism industry.

Additionally, Minister Dogley highlighted the importance of sharing the Seychelles’ experience with regional destinations and even other islands. “For me sharing and partnering with other islands states is excellent because as far as COVID is concerned, it has taught us that we need to work together to share experiences and knowledge as we go along so that we can identify the bright spots and also how we can overcome the challenges COVID has put in our way.”

Mrs Francis, STB Chief Executive reiterated the destination’s commitment towards Safe Tourism. She explained that the safety guidelines put in place in Seychelles reflects the efforts of the industry to rebuild the confidence of potential visitors.

“Advocating for safe tourism is the best way we can help our industry now; this is why the STB is urging other destinations and other partners including airlines to have mandatory testing policies amongst their operational procedures. Based on the trends we have seen developing our team has judged it essential for the destination to work towards the creation of a safe bubble for its survival,” said Mrs Francis.

On her part, Mrs Sybille Cardon commented on the indispensable assistance provided by the Tourism related businesses from the private sector.

Talking about the future of Seychelles’ tourism industry, Mrs Francis emphasised on the tourism board’s marketing strategy to increase the visibility of the destination through digital marketing and constant engaging of trade partners around the world through virtual platforms.

Mrs Francis reassured the participants of the webinar of the authenticity of the Seychelles experience in the face of the new normal. Although they will now have to adhere to new measures under the guidance of the concerned authorities, visitors will still be able to fully immerse themselves in the offerings of the lush, tropical sanctuary of the Seychelles Islands.