BTA Aim To Increase African American Visitors

May 1, 2019

The Bermuda National Tourism Plan has set an ambitious goal to double the number of African American leisure air visitors by 2025, a target the Bermuda Tourism Authority “believes is achievable based on extensive research.”

“Currently African Americans represent 4 percent of Bermuda’s leisure air visitors. The National Tourism Plan goal is to grow that number to 8 percent. The metric on African American travel is one of six success indicators in the island’s tourism plan released last October,” the BTA said.

Bermuda Tourism Authority CEO Kevin Dallas said, “Our research shows African American consumers make up about 11 percent of our target audience in the cities where we focus our marketing efforts.

“Currently, only 4 percent of our leisure air visitors identify as African American. That means our destination is not winning its fair share of the African American travel market, which is now a $63 billion industry annually. This is a tremendous business opportunity for Bermuda and we can chase it down by mounting a coordinated effort with tourism stakeholders; the BTA cannot do it alone.”

“In 2018, the Bermuda Tourism Authority worked with Mandala Research to customise a portion of its African American Traveler Report to study high income earners with a valid passport. That research found culture and culinary to be important draws for winning African American travellers who visit international destinations.

“Over the past five years, the Bermuda Tourism Authority has worked with local food partners to build culinary tourism, and since the National Tourism Plan rollout, has convened stakeholder meetings to raise the profile of cultural tourism—particularly concentrating on heritage stories within the African Diaspora.

Mandala researchers said, “Sixty-four percent of cultural African American travellers, the highest spending segment of travellers, say the availability of African American cultural and heritage attractions is very important to their choice of destination for their leisure travel.”

“The National Tourism Plan concluded: African American travellers seeking culture align well with Bermuda’s “experience enthusiasts” consumer target. However, this audience seems largely unaware of how the island might be culturally relevant to them.”

“This is the core of the business opportunity for Bermuda,” Mr. Dallas said. “If we can enhance our cultural tourism offerings and make them relevant to the African American experience and compelling to African American travellers, we can win with this audience and meet the ambitious target. And importantly, these enriched cultural offerings about the black experience in Bermuda will appeal to all audiences, regardless of race.”

“The 2018 African American Traveler Report is based on interviews with 1,747 African-American leisure travellers in the United States in March and April of 2018. The data was collected online using nationally representative online partner panels. The Bermuda Tourism Authority was one of nine sponsors of the research.”

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Comments (15)

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  1. Onion Juice says:

    Well changing the name of Somers Day will be fitting.

  2. Triangle Drifter says:

    Ethnic tourism does not work. It might make some locals feel better but the yield for the effort is not worth it. What next, go after the Hispanic tourist? They are a much larger percentage of the US population. They might be more affluent & more likely to afford a Bermuda vacation. How about the Asian population? No, the BTA needs to fish where the fish are. Go after the people who can afford Bermuda no matter what species they are.

    • hmmm says:

      Nope it does not work, same way they tried to recruit African Bermudians in the UBP/oba. Even trying to give them leadership positions. Look at Jet gate Craig for example need I say more.

      Nope didn’t work 1st time and will not work the 2nd time with Craig.

    • Kevin Dallas says:

      I think you may have missed the point: when we look at our target audience (those who can afford Bermuda, fit the definition of our priority visitor segments, AND live in our focus/nurture cities), those folks are 11% African American, while only 4% of our current visitors are.

      We are fishing squarely where the fish are!

    • Thumbs up says:

      Ok Donald….

  3. Bullwinkle T. Mooseknuckle says:

    For what reason?

    • Sandgrownan says:

      It makes some locals feels good that there may be tourists that look like them. It’s pandering to our xenophobic base

  4. Ok says:

    Problem is Bermuda is to expensive. The majority of African Americans can’t afford Bermuda. According to the Washington post In 2017 African Americans are the only demographic that are making less money than they did in 2000 and have a poverty rate neally twice of that of white Americans….I worked around a lot of tourists and the majority of white Americans complained about Bermuda’s prices…even a simple soda or water…..

  5. Hmm says:

    Sooo Sir John Swan gets backlash for a comment of the need for caucasian rich folk which would have no negative impact on our dollar.

    Just finished popping my popcorn. Will wait till the racist minions join with the identically same outcry or “concern” about a plan for black tourists instead of “white, or asian…” tourists to our island. Let’s see how ignorant we can really be about the facts of life. Ready, Go!

  6. Richard A says:

    NICE! Good job BTA!

  7. Jones says:

    The people at the BTA are utterly inept. African Americans account for 13% of the US population and are overwhelmingly on the lower economic end of ethnic groups. If you want to go after a particular ethnic group in American, Asians should be the ones to target. Asian Americans have the highest household income in the US. They are also the fastest growing racial group in America along with Hispanics.

    • Kevin Dallas says:

      I think we have a pretty good idea what we’re doing – and a good handle on our own data. Calling people ‘inept’ in an anonymous forum is not a particularly productive way to have a dialog.

      11% of our target audience (those who can afford Bermuda, fall into one of our priority visitor segments, and live in our focus/nurture cities) are African American, but only 4% of our current visitors are.

      To be clear, our marketing is broad and inclusive, but we see a specific business opportunity in getting closer to our ‘fair share’ of African American travellers.

  8. Real Deal says:

    We Need Chinese visitors