10 November, 2010

WTM 2010: Samoa Tourism Authority to work more closely with agents

by Olivia Hemmings

Samoa has announced it will work to increase agents' awareness of the destination following Air New Zealand's decision to pull its direct flight.

Speaking at WTM, Dwayne Bentley, marketing and promotions manager at the Samoan Tourism Authority, said it was now looking to market itself as a twin-centre holiday with Australia and New Zealand following Air New Zealand's decision to withdraw its direct flight to the Polynesian island.

Despite the airline's decision, Bentley confirmed that UK visitors had been 'stable' over the last 12 months, while the number of operators featuring it had increased to 12 from 8.

In a bid to support and work more closely with agents, the tourist board has produced a How To Sell Samoa supplement. In 2011, it will also be giving away a place on a fam trip through its online training website sellsamoa.com

"Samoa is a small destination in people's minds. We're looking to increase awareness," explained Bentley.

Samoa will also welcome new product next year, including the 100-room luxury Warwick hotel, while the Seabreeze hotel will reopen after extensive refurbishment following the tsunami.

Source: TTG Live