Cuba solidifies position as rising multi-centre holiday destination in the Caribbean

Posted: 13-Oct-16 10:56

Cuba is the Caribbean destination of the moment, at least according to Price Travel, a Cancun-based travel agency that recently revealed the demand of holiday packages to Cuba had grown by 33 per cent between January and September this year, solidifying its position as a multi-destination stop in the region. This recent growth in popularity was documented in an article by El Economista, which also revealed there were challenges ahead to maintain and support this growing trend.

Cuba solidifies position as rising multi-centre holiday destination in the Caribbean

We keep on saying (and it keeps on being confirmed) that Cuba is in vogue, not just among celebrities and artists but also, and most importantly, among worldwide travellers, especially U.S. visitors, for whom it’s now easier than ever to visit the island since Obama’s administration relaxed rules on the trade embargo regarding travel to Cuba. This has been, in fact, the main factor pushing up tourism numbers to Cuba over the last year or so, but the rise in popularity has been more pronounced over the last few months, with 2016 seeing a steep spike in tourism figures.

Further confirmation of this is a recent report published on Mexican newspaper, El Economista, in which managing director for Price Travel, a Cancun-based travel company, revealed Cuba as the one destination experiencing the highest growth in recent times. Esteban Velazquez explained how demand for multi-centre holiday packages to Cuba from Cancun had grown by 33 per cent between January and September, earning it a solid position as the number one multi-destination stop between Cancun and the island.

El Economista also revealed that Price Travel’s website grew by 50 per cent overall during the last nine months and nowadays sells around 1.5 million hotel rooms. Of these, the Mexican Caribbean makes up 40 per cent of their sales, Colombia 35 per cent, while Cuba is still a minority destination, but with significant growth patterns this year, especially after the involvement of many foreign companies investing in the creation of new Cuba hotels nationwide and taking over existing ones. Old Havana alone has four new hotels in the pipeline, while the Hotel Inglaterra recently reopened under Starwood’s The Luxury Collection brand.

But not all is as sweet as smelling the roses. Cuba may be the Caribbean’s most popular and trending destination of the moment, yet its lacking tourism infrastructure is lagging behind when compared to neighbouring destinations in the region. As Mr Velazquez explained:

“Hotels fill up really fast, there’s a growing demand in the destination, but many factors need to be tied up, there needs to be a good product.”

Despite this hurdle that needs to be overcome with the building of more hotels and tourism facilities, Velazquez did acknowledge that Cuba is very much in fashion and dis stress that the growth in demand is over 30 per cent so far this year, especially from U.S. and European travellers, who, making the most of the recent strengthening of the dollar, buy twin-centre holiday packages combining four days in Cancun with three in Cuba. This has also been made all the easier by the well-connected transport routes, with over four weekly flights connecting Havana and Cancun and ticket prices starring from just $300 return.

On a last note, Price Travel’s director was eager to highlight once again, how the Cuba-Cancun twin-centre combination was more popular than ever, with a growing demand among visitors who are now making the most of the low prices in both Caribbean destinations.


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