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Tourism effort would benefit from more activities and lower prices

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More activities and lower price tags are needed to rebuild Bermuda’s reputation as a tourist destination, residents believe.

took to the streets of Hamilton to find out whether people thought the tourism industry would bounce back.

The Royal Gazette

Barbara Sperryn-Jones expressed optimism about the Island’s future as a destination, but said work must be done to spread the word that it exists.

“I think it will get better, but the Island needs to be promoted,” she said. “It has huge potential, but I don’t think Bermuda is being promoted much abroad. I never heard about Bermuda before I came here.”

She suggested that an improved ferry service could help.

“Tourists like the ferry,” she said. There are so many people who would like to go on it.”

Her husband

Tom said: “I think the biggest issue is value for money. Bermuda is an expensive place. We get all these visitors down here on the cruise ships and they eat and drink on the boat. Bermuda needs to offer cost-effective alternatives because the people visiting on the ships have little incentive to come off the ship.

“Why fly to Bermuda when you can fly somewhere else for half the cost?”

He also noted the failed effort to introduce a beach bar to Warwick Long Bay, saying initiatives of that nature could prove a big draw for visitors.

Melissa Burgess said she hoped the tourism industry would improve, but said the cost of the Island is an issue for some visitors.

“Maybe there are too many five-star accommodations; too much focus on the high-end,” she said. “Perhaps making more affordable options would make a difference.”

A lack of activities for both adults and children was also an issue, but moving forward with gaming could make a difference, she said.

Chaioma Lawrence said she believed the industry would bounce back. Her friend

Sabriyya Harvey was less optimistic.

However they both agreed with Ms Burgess, that a lack of activities is holding Bermuda back.

Said Ms Harvey: “People need things to do, or else people are going to get bored. We need something like a water park.”

Ms Lawrence said: “I think things are going to rebound because people are going to come up with things to do. There’s not enough to do right now.”

One woman, who asked not to be named, said Bermuda seems to have focused on catering to the elderly. More needs to be done to draw other visitors, such as allowing gaming and decriminalising cannabis, she said.

“I think we are all adults, and have a choice as to whether we drink or not. To each his own. It’s not just Christians on this Island, so why are we catering only to them?”

Another woman agreed that more needs to be done in the way of entertainment. Such initiatives could easily provide employment opportunities for Bermudians, she said.

“We have a lot of talent on this Island, but they have nowhere to perform,” she said. “We could keep the Gombeys, but we could have more shows, and it has to keep going. We fly kites on Easter Sunday, but why just do it at Easter?”

A Pembroke man said something must be done to return cruise ships to St George’s. Asked about gaming, he said: “It could cause some problems. I’m a gambler, but it could cause problems. If they do it, it shouldn’t be in Hamilton. Maybe down in St David’s.”

Barbara and Tom Sperryn-Jones, pictured with their children Euan and Emily (Photo by Glenn Tucker)
Sabriyya Harvey (Photo by Glenn Tucker)
Chaioma Lawrence (Photo by Glenn Tucker)

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Published April 22, 2013 at 9:00 am (Updated April 21, 2013 at 11:07 pm)

Tourism effort would benefit from more activities and lower prices

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