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Liberal Vannin regards the new Tourism "Strategy" as aspirational and challenges Government to deliver 400,000 visitors by
2025, to prove that it is delivering.
At the Liberal Vannin monthly coffee morning held last Saturday, June 18th, party members considered the recently published Tourism / Visitor Economy
Strategy for the Island:
This document identifies key challenges that need to be addressed if the target of 500,000 visitors by 2032 is to be achieved (a 50% increase on
pre-covid 2019 figures).
Chief among these is the perceived barrier of the costs of travel to the Island. However, this strategy document provides no indication as to how
this is to be addressed, other than a reference to "develop and market ferry-inclusive packaged holidays to the Island". Such a development is to
be welcomed, but the government now owns the ferry service and has also shown that it is willing to subsidise air links for business travel. If it
is serious about tackling the costs of travel on and off the Island, then it should conduct market research on a cost/benefit of analysis of reducing
fares, particularly over the off-season months (November - March).
Most if not all of the "usps" (unique selling points) listed are not usps at all. Apart from the TT, perhaps our only other usp is that we have a range
of attractions to offer in one small location. That is what we need to market.
Another challenge listed is the difficulty in recruiting staff. Our hospitality / tourism sector need to increase wages, with the Manx Living
Wage as a minimum, to assist in recruiting a higher calibre of staff, to deliver the quality improvements that this strategy calls for.
Paul Weatherall, Chair of Liberal Vannin, commented:
"This whole document is aspirational in tone, rather than indicating key measures expected to achieve results. Nevertheless, Liberal Vannin looks
forward to visitor targets and spend increasing steadily over the next 10 years and will be assessing progress in the run-up to the next general
election in 2026, with the expected total number of visitors approaching 400,000 in 2025."
For further information, please contact:
Paul Weatherall, Chair, Liberal Vannin - 479436; email@example.com
Location: Isle of Man
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