HAVANA, Cuba, June 28 (acn) The Cuban Tourism Ministry is looking for new sources of visitors in an effort to encourage flights to the island from different countries of the world and with it, boost one of the country’s major economic sectors.
Cuban tourist authorities and experts are promoting the island’s attractions in Asia, the Middle East and Latin America, three regions which have not been traditional sources of tourists to the Caribbean island.
On Tuesday, Cuba launched a promotional campaign in Qatar, particularly aimed at travel agencies and cultural institutions in an effort to bring Arab visitors.
According to PL news agency, the campaign will be extended to India and China.
Another promotional action is the “Authentic Cuba” campaign which was recently launched in several Latin American countries, like Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Panama.
The initiative included detailed information about major Cuban tourist centers and modalities in the areas of health, culture, ecology, scuba diving, nautical activities and congresses, as well as the summer season program.
The promotional action is aimed at travel agents, representatives of airline companies, tour-operators and specialized media.
Tourist director for Central America, Maria Antonia Rodriguez told reporters that the island has thus far been considered a sun-and-beach tourist center; however, the official said that Cuba offers other attractions, such as its history, heritage and a warm and hospitable people.
At the same time, Cuba is expanding its hotel infrastructure as its accommodation offer includes 60 thousand 552 hotel rooms, while future projects are expected to take that figure up to 85 thousand by 2020.
Eight new hotels were opened in 2012 in Cuba, a Caribbean destination picked by over 2 million 800 thousand foreign tourists that year. That figure is expected to increase in 2013 to 3 million 120 thousand visitors from Canada and European countries in particular.
Despite the encouraging prospects and results, the Cuban tourist sector still faces inefficiencies related to service quality, which have a negative impact on the performance and growth of a sector considered the country’s most dynamic economic area.