PT&I supported project helps Vanuatu tourism players


<p style="text-align: justify;">A workshop focused on providing SME Tourism Accommodation Providers with e-Marketing Support in terms of Websites was held in three locations across Vanuatu late last month.<!--more--></p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">The project is a joint initiative of the South Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO), Pacific Islands Trade &amp; Invest (PT&amp;I) put together in association with World Hotel Link (WHL), experts in the development of e-Marketing tools and support through funding provided from the European Community.</p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">The workshops were divided into two parts where WHL representative Len Cordiner first illustrated the growing importance of e-Marketing and the recent trends of e-Marketing penetration online.</p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">The second session involved educating the accommodation providers in Santo on the e-Marketing tools (Instant Booking Widget, custom-made websites, with links to mobile phones and a Facebook page). These would involve taking photos of the accommodation, followed by a session of noting all the facilities and services that are available at the respective accommodations.</p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">SPTO Chief Executive Officer, Mr Ilisoni Vuidreketi said SME e-Marketing Support activity has been well received in 8 countries covered so far. These 8 countries are Marshall Islands, Tuvalu, FSM, Palau, Solomon Islands, PNG, East Timor and Vanuatu.</p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">Seventy-four persons participated in the three workshops, most being tourism SME operators. Most showed interest in looking at other different models that will support remote properties in terms of connectivity and training. A total of 58 properties have signed up to be assisted under the e-Marketing support scheme.</p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">Reaching out to these remote island operators was made possible through the agreement with Pacific Islands Trade &amp; Invest to have the Project extended from Port Vila to the outer island of Santo in the Sanma Province and Tanna. The next three countries to be covered in this programme are Nauru, Niue and Samoa.</p>
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