Puerto Rico marketing organization focuses on helping write island’s 2nd ‘comeback story’
Changes gear to next phase: Show ease, safety in traveling to the island
SAN JUAN — Discover Puerto Rico (DPR), the island’s destination marketing organization, said in a news release that it is executing plans based on research that found potential travelers are seeking information on where to travel next, and is ready to inform them about the degree of safety enjoyed on the island, where they can visit with peace of mind once the government lifts restrictions.
“As we emerge from the COVID pandemic, we must write yet another comeback story, ” the CEO of Discover Puerto Rico, Brad Dean, said about the island tourism’s recovery since 2017’s Hurricane Maria. “And while many challenges lie ahead, I have no doubt that together, we are going to show the world that nothing can keep Puerto Rico from reaching its potential. For the sake of the 80,000 people who work in the tourism industry in Puerto Rico, and the people throughout the island who are positively impacted by more than $640 Million of taxes generated by the tourism industry, this comeback is crucial.”
During an industry update delivered virtually on Wednesday, DPR shared research showing that beaches, rural destinations and national parks are how people want to ease back into travel, all of which are “well aligned with Puerto Rico’s product,” the release reads.
“Hotel occupancy in the U.S. has increased each week for the past 6 weeks, with the most recent figures at 35% average occupancy for hotels. Airlines have begun to add capacity back. For Puerto Rico, airlines have posted encouraging schedule levels for the latter part of this year, signaling potential for economic recovery in the next few months. The leisure audience continues to have the longest booking window, with most flights being booked more than 90 days out. Because the booking window for trips to Puerto Rico has increased so dramatically, we know that Discover Puerto Rico needs to be reaching consumers now to see them arrive this fall,” Dean said.
Although the marketing organization has kept the island on travelers’ minds through various efforts, it is going to focus on the “next phase of the plan,” which is “about excitement, confidence, and empowerment. Discover Puerto Rico is no longer just inspiring. We are giving people permission to act on their desires, supported with proof points like ease of access, and ‘no passport’ as well as delivering on a new standard of safety in travel,” said DPR’s chief marketing officer, Leah Chandler.
The organization recently released Visitor Health and Safety Guidelines established by the Puerto Rico Tourism Co. to provide an easy to understand snapshot of the main mandates surrounding the new COVID-19 health protocols. The organization is also developing a companion video to share on social media what the visiotr experience will be like.
As the organization prepares to welcome meeting planners, travel advisers and journalists for site visits, branded safety kits have been developed to include masks, hand sanitizer, sunscreen, sunglasses and other items. Meanwhile, virtual site visit videos are also being created to highlight meeting venues and hotels to help planners and advisers make decisions about bringing their events and clients to Puerto Rico, DPR explained.