Tour operator Tui is teaming up with the Travel Foundation to boost smaller travel businesses and entrepreneurs in Jamaica.
Tui Care Foundation, working alongside the UK-based Travel Foundation, has set up the “Big Up Small Business” project which will help 150 micro, small and medium enterprises in the Caribbean nation.
They will receive training and marketing support to help them develop and promote tourism products and services to hotels, tour operators and visitors to Jamaica.
From this group of 150 businesses, 10 entrepreneurs will be selected to become “beacon businesses”, who will be given more intensive coaching and guidance from travel industry experts.
The initiative builds on a previous Tui-Travel Foundation project called Out and About in Montego Bay, which helped to quadruple the number of tourists visiting Montego Bay’s Harbour Street Craft Market.
Alexander Panczuk, executive director, external affairs and development, for Tui Care Foundation, said: “Small businesses are the engine of the Jamaican economy and vital for employment and innovation, and tourism is a sector that fuels that.
“With this project, entrepreneurs will get the support they need to make the most of Jamaica’s thriving visitor economy. This, in turn, will enhance Jamaica’s tourist offering.”
The project will include expos, conferences and workshops to help these smaller businesses to connect with tourists and travel firms.
Coral Purvil-Williams, project co-ordinator at the Travel Foundation, added: “We are going to provide small businesses with amazing opportunities to connect with Jamaica’s international tourism industry.
“I would urge any entrepreneur with an interest in the tourism sector to look out for an invitation to our workshops and to apply to be one of our 10 beacon businesses who will really get a head start.”