Bonaire should distinguish itself from ‘Sea of Sameness’

TCB director Miles Mercera during his presentation at the Tourism Conference. Photo: ABC Online Media

KRALENDIJK – According to the director of TCB, Miles Mercera, Bonaire must make a fundamental choice about the type of destination it wants to be. “Do we want to be the McDonald’s of the Caribbean? Serving visitors exactly the same as what they can find elsewhere in the Caribbean”? Mercera presented this question to the participants of the Bonaire Tourism Conference.

The tourism industry is meeting today at the Marriott Hotel to discuss the future of tourism on the island.
According to Mercera, the challenge lies in being unique and offering visitors an authentic experience. Mercera also underscores the importance of investing in the product of the island. “That also means investing in hotels. Not that it always has to be bigger, but we should invest in the quality of our resorts,” says Mercera.

Mercera says the TCB is also breaking new ground with data collection and analysis. “Our decisions and our marketing efforts must be based on a fundamental understanding of who our visitors are and what they are looking for.” Mercera feels it is important for the island to collect its ‘own’ data. “We can’t figure this out from, say, the Googles of this world”.

To obtain this data, TCB will start interviewing departing passengers at the airport. “We see significant differences in the way Dutch visitors book and the American ones. There are also differences in how long they stay, and how early or what time they book. If you know these you can ensure that you use your scarce marketing resources where it matters most” is Mercera’s firm conviction.

Deel dit artikel