Kagedbird’s Blog

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Tourism Sector get it right

I’ve Fallen and I can’t get up

Everyday I hear on the media that we are in a Tourism crisis because of the global financial crisis. “We are not getting the numbers”, Mr. Neil Forrester said. How long has Mr. Forrester and the rest of the Sector known about this global financial crisis? In fact if he and his members had taken proactive steps such as reducing rates and increasing marketing then we would not have been in the crisis that we are in today. They are talking about 15% occupancy etc.IS THERE NO HOPE?

If I were the Prime Minister of this country I would issue a deportation order for Forrester and co. and Nationalize the industry. We all know that governments can’t run anything but that is the lack of confidence I have in these Hoteliers. They offer no hope so lets try something radical.

Michael Manley did something similar to that but for different reasons. The result today is Sandals and other such products.

On a serious note though we need to evaluate the contribution that the sector is making to our economy and what part it will play in our future development. Obviously the old model is not working and if it means that the Government has to regulate the industry for the improvement of our economy then so be it.



January 30, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized


  1. Any country that depends on tourism is a worthless country. There are many alternative and viable sectors that we could explore. Financial services, technology sector, sports, etc.
    Let tourism die a miserable death!

    Comment by unclef | February 1, 2009 | Reply

    • I do agree to an extent that we are selling ourselves short. If you read my other two posts
      https://kagedbird.wordpress.com/2009/01/17/guests-steal-too/ and https://kagedbird.wordpress.com/2009/01/09/searches-on-hotel-staff/
      I explore one negative aspect of the servitude that Tourism has become here. If you actually read some of the comments by Ninette, you will see that people accept this servitude as a part of life.
      I cannot totally agree with you though because Tourism has a role to play. I just think that we need to do things differently-especially in light of our colonial history.
      After all the UK may be into Financial services and Technology but they still depend heavily on Tourism. The big difference is that they do not promote the servitude there that they promote here as expat hoteliers.

      Comment by kagedbird | February 1, 2009 | Reply

  2. ” people accept this servitude as a part of life.”
    Good service is good service. It does not have to be
    negative. You are providing paradise for most people that visit. Paradise indicates all levels of pleasure. Tourism is a service industry and we must remember that. When a person pays for a service that is indicated as available it must be given. We do not have to look at it in a negative way as Martiun Luther King Jr. said,
    “A man can’t ride your back unless it’s bent.”
    “All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.”

    Comment by shawubble | February 4, 2009 | Reply

  3. Servitude is to be completely controlled by someone else more powerful. It can also be described as being a slave.
    Service is providing a product for someone else who pays to receive this product. Good service is delivering service in a manner that meets the needs of the customer effectively, efficiently and as expeditiously as practicable.

    Many managers and workers in our service industry look at the line workers as being in servitude to the more powerful European tourist. What sometimes happens is that because they are so busy saying yes “Massa” and smiling and showing their teeth, they do not understand the immediate need of the guest and do not deliver it. This is bad service.

    My point is that we need to provide good service while at the same time maintain our dignity. After all we come from a colonial history and should never allow ourselves to come under the control of more powerful forces again.

    Comment by kagedbird | February 4, 2009 | Reply

  4. I say again“A man can’t ride your back unless it’s bent.”

    Comment by shawubble | February 4, 2009 | Reply

  5. There are a lot of bent backs here.

    Comment by kagedbird | February 4, 2009 | Reply

  6. So then straighten up.
    Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.
    All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.

    Comment by shawubble | February 4, 2009 | Reply

  7. Therefore we are both saying the same thing then. We need to change the way that we do things.

    It starts from us too. If you read this you would see what I mean:-

    Comment by kagedbird | February 4, 2009 | Reply

  8. Thank you very much. Please feel free to contribute.

    Comment by kagedbird | April 9, 2009 | Reply

  9. excellent site this kagedbird.wordpress.com brill to see you have what I am actually looking for here and this this post is exactly what I am interested in. I shall be pleased to become a regular visitor 🙂

    Comment by Viarvara | April 11, 2009 | Reply

  10. What cannot be denied is that tourism is an important economic aspect to any country which is lacking in resources or services that would make it competitive with similar countries in similar economic fields or areas of development. For example, Mexico cannot compete with Hong Kong in the financial sector and so need to reply on a different form of service. Tourism is an integral part of any country; it just depends on the level of focus given by the government and relevant companies.

    In terms of servitude, you need to differentiate between customer service and servitude.

    The waitress in the hotel is not a slave to anyone, nor does she have a ‘bent back’. I work on cruise ships and one thing which brings the customers back is good customer service. Same as for the islands we visit, and I have visited a lot of islands. The islands where there is a level of hostility towards outsiders and tourists and poor customer service are only hurting themselves. Good customer services towards others is not indicative of servitude. This spills over into the rest of Kagebird’s Blogs. The issues with banks, service facilities, doctors, nurses, beaches…all the issues which have been mentioned in the blogs are all linked to customer service.

    Good customer service makes good business sense, it also equates with developing relationships between people and industries.

    If anything, what you should be focussing on in the tourism industry is that why with all these tourists visiting the islands and all the tourist dollars generated from cruise ships, hotels, tourists, etc why has none of that money been visibly put back into the communities in terms of schooling, development, etc? I visit the islands on a weekly basis for the last 3 years and with the increase in tourism, I see very little up liftment on the islands, just more and more hotels. Why is the local community not benefiting…tourism is your oil.

    Comment by CCTVandSecurity | July 24, 2009 | Reply

  11. Thank you very much for your comment. I really wish I could get more persons who like you can take the debate to a higher level. Servitude was not what I was trying to bring out in my post. It came up as a response to the first person who commented. Servitude does exist in Antigua’s Tourism Industry because of the model that we follow here. Most of the Hoteliers here have carried over the plantation system to the tourism industry and it was accepted by the local population who were getting better wages than in the cane field or the cotton field . The basic plantation structure however has not disappeared because most of the managers are imported from Europe and the indigenous workers are seldom promoted to high level management positions. Our colonial history has taught us that whites are superior and because of this hotel employees act it out in the way they interact with guests. It is made obvious in that black guests receive worse service than white guests.Hotel employees also believe that a big smile is the solution at all times instead of trying to analyze the guests particular need and trying to meet it, i.e customer service vs servitude.

    The point of my post was the poor way that the hoteliers were handling the tourism industry by not being proactive enough. It is implied in the post that enough benefits are not reaching the local population but that was not the purpose of this post. I am actually in the process of doing a post on the contribution of tourism to our local economy against the amount of concessions and incentives that our government provides for the industry.

    I hope you will continue to read my blog and contribute with your well written comments.

    Comment by kagedbird | July 24, 2009 | Reply

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