WTM 2015: Ecuador aims to improve agent training offering

WTM 2015: Ecuador aims to improve agent training offering

Ecuador has set a target of doubling its income from tourism to $3 billion by 2020, and has reaffirmed its commitment to the trade in helping to grow arrivals from the UK.

The Ministry of Tourism has invested $10 million in its worldwide marketing campaign, All You Need is Ecuador, this year, accounting for a third of the country’s annual budget for tourism.

Of that, around $6 million was spent on trade marketing, including holding UK roadshows and events, producing trade newsletters and training webinars, and attending LATA’s flagship event Experience Latin America in June.

Vice tourism minister Dominic Hamilton said: “It’s been a challenging year because half of our GDP comes from oil, but there’s still a very strong political will to make tourism a priority. We are now the third most important industry in Ecuador, and we are aiming to double our income from tourism by 2020.

“We have got a huge challenge to help people understand the destination, and so the trade continues to be very important to us as we try to have more of a presence in the UK. The Galapagos Islands can seem quite complicated so agents need some training, so we are looking at ways to do that better in the UK.”

The country has also invested in its infrastructure, opening an airport in Quito two years ago and renovating its airport in Guayaquil, reopening tourist rail route the Train Crucero, and spending $8 billion on its road infrastructure and signage over the past eight years.

Hamilton added: “It’s a big investment for Ecuador, but it’s a reflection of the importance that the national government is putting into tourism. People are moving around the country more easily than ever.”

More than a quarter of Brits book travel to Ecuador via the trade, staying an average of 13 days and spending around $1,700 during their stay.


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