The Ministry of Tourism's effort to secure airlift into the island from new and emerging markets is bearing fruit, with the arrival of an inaugural flight from the Czech Republic yesterday (Dec. 28).
The 200-seat Boeing 800 aircraft from Prague, with 84 visitors on board, landed at the Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay, St. James. It was the first of 12 rotations that will be coming to Jamaica between December 2012 and April 2013, boosting arrivals for the winter tourist season.
Passengers were met and welcomed by tourism sector officials, and were showered with gifts and souvenirs, while enjoying the melodic sounds of a local band. The first three passengers off the flight, as well as the Captain and Chief Flight Engineer, received special gift packages.
Deputy Director of Tourism in charge of marketing, Sandra Scott, told JIS News that the inaugural flight from Prague represented the dawn of a new day for Jamaica’s tourism and the fruits of the hard work in the country’s efforts to find new and lucrative markets.
"This inaugural flight from Prague is very important to our progress on new and emerging markets. This flight is shared with the Dominican Republic… and we welcome the passengers from this flight as it means a lot to our marketing efforts and our initiatives as we focus on new business. The passengers are really happy as most of them are coming to Jamaica for the first time," she said.
She informed that the passengers would be staying at hotels in resorts areas across the country as a way of “spreading” the business throughout the tourism landscape.
Ms. Scott told JIS News that Jamaica will also welcome an inaugural flight from Moscow, Russia on January 1, with “more flights from other countries in Eastern (Europe) going forward."