|Tourist Zone for Destination Belize|
|Written by Shane D. Williams|
|Thursday, 26 August 2010 00:00|
Motorists, cyclists and pedestrians will agree that the tourism village area is one of the most chaotic in the city. Though there are signs in the area that establish the street as “one way” during working hours, residents who traffic the area regularly see those as mere suggestions if not just idle thoughts. Judging from the blatant disregard for standard traffic regulations in that area, it is a miracle that more vehicles are not damaged or pedestrians injured. It is the first impression that millions of tourists experience of Destination Belize, and to put it lightly, it is a disgrace. The Belize Tourism Board plans to do something about it.
Seleni Matus, Director of BTB, says that there is a plan to introduce a tourism friendly zone in the vicinity of the fort street tourism village. She says that only 42% of cruise passengers that get off the cruise ship actually organize tours. Therefore, the poor presentation is having a damaging impact on potential clients. Matus said, “We just completed our analysis that we are losing on an annual basis close to $50 million because of the poor presentation that we have as our destination.”
The tourism zone is an idea that was derived from a meeting with cruise industry shareholders about an organizational restructuring process. Matus says that the zone will address traffic concerns and visitors flow. The area will see a boost in security measures as well. Matus said, “The BTB’s mission is to help grow the tourism industry and there’s a tremendous opportunity to better position stakeholders to capitalize on the many untapped benefits that cruise tourism is already bringing to the country.”