The Turks and Caicos Islands is the third most desirable Caribbean destination for both Americans and Canadians, according to a popular internet travel deal company.
Travelzoo conducted surveys of more than 3,000 of its members in the USA and Canada between August 7 and 10, releasing the results during region-wide live stream on August 27.
It asked participants which country or territory in the Caribbean they were most likely to visit over the next two years amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
The 1,721 surveyed Americans chose the US Virgin Islands – which they can travel to without a passport – then the Bahamas, while the TCI was the third most popular selection.
Meanwhile the 1,593 Canadian members selected Cuba and the Dominican Republic as their top two with the TCI again grabbing the third spot.
Director of Tourism Pamela Ewing told the Weekly News on Thursday (September 10) that she was delighted with the TCI’s placement on the lists.
“Destination Turks and Caicos continues to see consistent interest from our top two source markets – the USA and Canada,” she said.
“The Turks and Caicos Tourist Board has invested significantly in advertising in both markets over the years and our marketing efforts have been amplified given the challenges in the travel and tourism industry due to the current pandemic.
“The Tourist Board has been actively working to communicate to both our consumers and travel partners that TCI is open for business and the new requirements introduced to ensure our visitor’s safety.
“We are happy to see that our message is resonating with potential visitors and that TCI is ranked number three on both lists.”
The results of the survey were presented during the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association’s CHTA Live Resilience Series of webinars.
Lara Barlow, general manager of Travelzoo in the USA, and Susan Catto, head of content and publishing for Travelzoo in Canada, made the presentation.
It was named ‘Gauging consumer travel sentiments: Travelzoo’s Caribbean travel outlook’.
During the presentation, Travelzoo revealed that 49 percent of its members were “finding joy in planning future travel during this time”.
Forty percent of US participants in the survey said they would book a vacation in 2020 at the earliest, but 67 percent would wait to travel until 2021.
While 30 percent of Canadian members would book in 2020 at the earliest, but 61 percent would wait to travel until 2021.
The top factors affecting their decision making is feeling safe in the chosen destination, getting a great travel deal, and that the destination has a declining or low rate of Covid-19.
Members are most likely to stay in a chain hotel or all-inclusive for some time between five and seven nights, Travelzoo said.
Information about the country’s travel restrictions during the pandemic is key, the survey revealed, as well as information about available amenities and cleaning guidelines.
Those surveyed said they were willing to wear a mask, test for Covid-19 on arrival and submit an online health visa.
But they did not want to quarantine, follow a nightly curfew or submit an at home quarantine document.
Sixty-nine percent of Americans are willing to use a small aeroplane to island hop, while only 54 percent of Canadians are happy to do so.
This story was first published by Weekly News | Image: Beaches Turks and Caicos