Kids to get free holidays

| 17/03/2009

(CNS): As part of the Ministry of Tourism’s drive to keep families coming to the Cayman Islands this summer, children are being offered free vacations including flights, food and fun. The promotion is part of a number of initiatives to maintain Cayman’s share of whatever market remains this season. Speaking in the Legislative Assembly on Monday, Minister Charles Clifford said consumer confidence was at an unprecedented low but research showed that kids were key in family holiday decisions.

“According to the latest American Express Harris Group research, families will do whatever it takes to keep travel in their plans because it’s the only time that they truly get to spend together. In the same study, 66% of parents admitted their children were very influential in vacation decision-making,” he said adding that the DoT’s summer strategy, in addition to offering the regular fifth night free, would extend to kids.

“The package…..will allow kids travelling with adults to eat, stay, and play free at some of our best attractions, including the Cayman Turtle Farm at Boatswain’s Beach, Queen Elizabeth II Botanic Park, Pedro St. James and a wide variety of private sector owned water sports. And this year, for the first time, kids aged 12-17 will be able to dive free,” he said. “This summer, the local tourism industry is partnering with Cayman Airways to implement a Kids Fly Free promotion which, in today’s environment, will be a direct motivation for families to travel.”

The minister also mentioned the planned skate camp programme, which was announced last month (DoT looks to gimmicks). He said research reveals there are more than 20 million skateboarders in the US, where it has eclipsed baseball as the national pastime of America’s youth. “‘Skate Cayman’ will reinforce Cayman’s leadership position in the region by creating an authentic, credible programme geared towards families by teaming world class athletes with a world class on-island asset — Black Pearl Skate Park at Grand Harbour,” he added.

He said negotiations were ongoing with leading skating athletes. He could not release specific details but said some of the top names in skateboarding would be endorsing the programme.  

While the local tourismindustry has been impacted by three hurricanes and the US economy it was still doing relatively well. “There is more to be done and components of our sector which remain vulnerable, and we will continue to dedicate ourselves to moving forward together,” Clifford added.

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