FITCuba 2022 Kicks Off on an Upbeat Mode
"The fair is something we were eager to do. Although two years have passed, we have not stopped working with the illusion of being able to do it the first year, then the second, and finally the day came and here we are."
At the end of the "Sustainable Tourism Event. For a tourism for all generations", held at the Iberostar Selection Hotel in Varadero, and when asked about the levels of pre-pandemic tourism, which are currently affected by specific situations of scarcity and lack of resources, Cuba's Tourism Minister García Granda explained that the year 2022 will not be easy because the international epidemiological situation is not yet fully under control.
When asked about the levels of pre-pandemic tourism, tinged at the moment by concrete situations of scarcity and lack of resources, Minister Garcia Granda explained that the year 2022 will not be easy because still the international epidemiological situation is not totally controlled.
"I am an optimistic Minister; I am the one who had to suspend the tourist activity in Cuba. However, as it is already being shown from the control of Covid, to make a safe and responsible tourism, not only in the face of the pandemic, but we have dedicated an event to responsibility in the future, with the protection of the natural resources we exploit, we are hopeful that very soon we will recover."
"Canada is recovering, thanks to our own clients who already know us, to those who are repeat customers, who have a friend in Cuba with real and truthful information about Cuba and its reality. Some European markets are also recovering, which we are going to insist on now that summer is coming, and we continue to work more intensely in the countries of the region."
"It is true that we have shortages of some products, but we have managed to do wonders. That is quite transparent for the customers, maybe for us it is much more effort, but we are quite satisfied with the results, and it shows in our own customer surveys. They help us on a day-to-day basis to combat some of the campaigns that may come up with their own life stories."
Where Does the Russian Market Stand?
"The Russian market will continue to count as our top priority, and we are already working to rescue it. As soon as we find a way for the tour operators to resume their operations and air connection with that country may be possible, because of the distance, that it does not have to be 24 hours to get to Cuba."
"We are immersed in reactivating the tourist activity. Hopefully we will achieve it this year. We know that conditions will not be perfect. However, we have bet on 2.5 billion visitors. That is half of what we brought in the last few years. We know it is difficult, but we are optimistic".
The growth of English tourism
"The English market, when you visit them, when you look for the specialized press, you realize that there really is a growing demand.
Cuba is a very safe country, safe even now, post-pandemic; safe also because of its people".
The Progress of Tourism Recovery on the Island
"We have already surpassed this year the total number of visitors (390,000) that came last year. In mid-April, we were already hovering around 450 thousand visitors, of the figure we have set for ourselves, of the 2.5 million I was referring to earlier."
"Actually, this figure is not higher due to two factors: one, the global resurgence of the pandemic with the new strain, Omicron, which reduced the emission from the countries and, of course, the arrival of visitors in the months of January and February; and then, the situation in Russia and Ukraine, which has resulted in the loss of these two markets, although others have made up for it".