BTA: Visiting Teams Help Shoulder Season Jobs

January 4, 2017 | 14 Comments

The Bermuda Tourism Authority’s [BTA] strategy to attract sports teams to the island for training in the shoulder season is providing a boost for local transport companies and other small businesses, the BTA said today.

A swim team of 74 visiting Bermuda have hired Titan Express for the duration of their stay. Titan’s fleet of buses are transferring the 74 Indiana University swimmers as well as their coaches and support staff to and from the airport and to and from practices at the National Sports Centre [NSC].

They also planned runs into Hamilton for shopping and meals.

“Titan Express told us if not for this team coming to train in late December and early January, their buses would be parked,” said Glenn Jones, the BTA’s director of public and stakeholder relations.

“They hire drivers who don’t have full time jobs and those drivers don’t expect to get much work this time of year. So naturally, they’re excited for these work hours in the winter. This is putting money in their pockets.”

Image of Titan Express bus fleet 

Titan Express Dockyard Bermuda Jan 4 2017

Indiana University is training in Bermuda alongside swimmers from Germantown Academy. About 100 visiting athletes will overlap at the aquatics centre between December 27, 2016 and January 5, 2017. It represents the largest contingent at the pool as part of the BTA-NSC sports tourism partnership which began two years ago.

Ahead of their visit, Germantown’s Director of Communications Carla Zighelboim had no concern about sharing facilities with the larger team from Indiana.

“We have a long-standing relationship with the coaching staff at IU, and are very excited to see them while we are in Bermuda,” she said. “When our team is not training we plan to visit area attractions, go snorkelling, swim, relax on the beach and go cliff jumping.”

Germantown booked GAR Tours to transport its team of 30. GAR can carry up to 48 passengers. Owner George Albert Ratteray has created a niche for sports teams having also transported the Danish National Swim team when it trained here in January 2016.

“GAR Tours got rave reviews from the Danish coaching staff,” said Daniel Johnson, BTA’s assistant product development manager for sports. “Mr Ratteray understands the kind of service we need for sports teams and he delivers it reliably and at a good price.

“The amount of work now available to transport companies in the shoulder season is a good example of how the BTA’s sports tourism strategy has a positive economic impact across the community.”

“Private bus and mini bus operators are typically busy between April and October shuttling cruise ship passengers as well as air visitors in Bermuda for group travel. Between November and March the volume of business lightens,” the BTA said.

“Sports teams in the shoulder season, like the swimmers from Indiana University and Germantown Academy, help to fill the gap and keep Bermudians working. Some restaurants, visitor attractions and retail outlets also experience a positive economic impact.”

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Comments (14)

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  1. know your history says:

    Good for them and those are some nice buses!

  2. johnt says:

    A privatised bus service……hopefully this provides our illustrious unions a glimpse of the future should they keep walking out.

  3. Grainne Richmond says:

    Alvernia College from the US have also brought their Ladies Hockey Team from Jan 3rd to 6th this year for some pre-season training, to play some of the BHF Members and also to play against the Bermuda Womens National Team. Organised by ZAG Sports. Up to 6 US College and High School teams also coming throughout the rest of year.

  4. johnt says:

    I also enjoy the not so subtle hint regarding “otherwise unemployed drivers”…hopefully these guys can help pick up any slack created by striking bus drivers during the AC. So by all means BPSU strike away, hopefully your dead wood will rise to the surface and float away on the same tide as your hopes to ruin the AC.

  5. NCM says:

    With all the nonsense going on courtesy of the People’s Campaign and the BIU this is certainly good news for Bermudians. great job, BTA!

  6. Family Man says:

    Privatization works!

  7. Bacon grease says:

    If it wasn’t for Chris Furbert our public transportation could provide a reliable service…BUT on the bright side, small Bermuda businesses are benefitting!

    • Family Man says:

      Private buses and in a few months private ferries.

      We can only hope this signals the end of the BIU and their poor service.

    • I can't wait for the 2017 election says:

      Let history remind you that if it wasn’t for men & women like Mr. Chris Furbert a certain segment of the population would still be slaves.

      Regards,
      True Story

  8. wahoo says:

    This is great thanks BTA! Keep up the hard (very hard) work.

  9. Trump supporter says:

    Privatize the ptb. That way our schools kids won’t be struggling to get to school when everyone thinks fighting for a non BermudIan work permit is more important then getting our kids to school.

  10. Triangle Drifter says:

    I understand that we have well over 100 minibuses on the Island right now. Most of them parked this time of year.

    How much effort would it take for the owners of these minibus companies to get together & run the PTB routes? Bet people would be happy to pay, even if a bit more than regular bus fare.

    Could be the beginning of the end of the PTB. They can meet everyday all day long.

  11. Linda DeSantis says:

    Can someone please allow common sense to prevail & get the buses back on the road?
    We’re here in Bermuda on a two week vacation and are not impressed…..
    Being Scottish and having resided in Canada for several decades – our exposure to strong labour union mandate is significant.
    This personal process dispute should not be considered to be an industrial union issue.
    Bermuda is an incredible country and one of the best places on the planet to call home – please don’t change the world’s opinion as such, nor deter its growing status as a holiday destination of choice.

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