The Latin American Travel Association (LATA), in collaboration with the Nicaraguan Tourism Board and the Nicaraguan Embassy, launched its #NicaraguaisOpen campaign at a dedicated travel industry and media event that took place at Dolfin in Mayfair on Thursday 24 October.
The campaign aims to promote Nicaragua’s widespread tourism offering and create engagement with the travel trade, as well as growing visitor numbers following a period of uncertainty for the country.
In 2017, Nicaragua was a booming tourism destination with the first four months showing year-on-year growth in overnight visitor numbers of 28.4% making it the second fastest growing destination in the Americas at the time. Visitor numbers’ climbed to almost two million that year however, following a failed coup attempt, many of Nicaragua’s main markets stringent travel advice having a major impact on the local travel industry.
In February 2019, the UK’s Foreign Commonwealth Office (FCO) relaxed its travel advice to Nicaragua meaning that travel could resume to the country. Following this, LATA initiated a round table discussion with key tour operators to address questions they had about the destination and set up a FAM trip showcasing the destination first-hand to influential members of the travel industry.
LATA’s officially launched is #NicaraguaIsOpen campaign on 24 October with a dedicated event and panel discussion for trade and media which aimed to demonstrate the strength in Nicaragua’s tourism infrastructure and reassure the travel trade that the destination is safe and more than ready to receive visitors.
Many projects have been completed or are underway that aim to improve the infrastructure and drive tourism to the industry. For example, construction has now been completed on a trans-Nicaraguan highway running from Bluefields on the Caribbean coast to Managua near the Pacific coast. The 365km journey can now be done in just six hours exponentially increasing the capacity for self-drive tours across the country. Furthermore, a new passenger airport planned at Bilwi will provide direct access to the second largest rainforest in the western hemisphere (after the Amazon), the Bosawás Biosphere Reserve while the cruise terminal, shopping mall and new hotel at San Juan del Sur make it a must stop for cruise liners.
As part of the campaign, LATA is also creating a Nicaragua training course in partnership with Online Travel Training within its introductory Latin America course for travel agents which will ensure the travel trade feels confident in selling Nicaragua as a destination. The module aims to highlight the diversity of the country’s tourism offering, the internal and external connectivity, and the suitability for all forms of travel.
Ricardo Carioni, Deputy Ambassador to Nicaragua in the UK said:
“We are delighted to launch this campaign in collaboration with LATA. We are very proud of our country’s tourism offering and together with our fellow Nicaraguans, we look forward to welcoming UK visitors with open arms.”
For more information on LATA, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 020 7953 7470.