Wednesday, August 28, 2019
Wednesday, August 28, 2019
The vertical department team of The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism and Aviation (MOTA) recently hosted a group of private pilots, flying ambassadors, fixed based operators (FBO) and aviation media professionals to Freeport, Grand Bahama, on a familiarization trip of the destination.
The group, made up of representatives from Florida Aero Club, Stuart Jet Center, ATA Flight School, Jetscape, Aerospace, Banyan Air Service, Atlantic Aviation and Women in Aviation, departed from the Fort Lauderdale August 15 and returned on August 18, 2019.
The trip was designed to educate participants on Grand Bahama’s tourism and aviation product and services, network and meet with government officials and industry stakeholders, formulate business opportunities and simultaneously, provide the guests with a firsthand experience of the island’s unique attractions.
“The closest destination to the USA, getting to The Bahamas is not only quick, but also it’s easy,” says Captain Greg Rolle, senior director at the MOTA.
“We, along with the Bahamas Flying Ambassadors, our experts, have made it extremely easy for pilots, veterans or newbies, to fly in, around and out of our more than 60 airports in the Bahamas. Our fixed based operators, who are a one-stop shop for pilots, provide these pilots with all the necessary information, recommendations, guidance, tools and resources they need to travel to our destination,” he said.
“We have seen added interest from private pilots wanting to conduct group fly outs to The Bahamas, as well as a keen desire to engage in more authentic and culturally enriched experiences. As such, we were delighted to host them and created an itinerary that exceeded their needs and desires,” said Captain Rolle.
While in Grand Bahama, the group participated in a seminar conducted by the MOTA, Bahamas Customs and Immigration and Royal Bahamas Police Force agencies, as well as heard from stakeholders from the Grand Bahama Airport Company and the Grand Bahama Port Authority.
The group also visited the West End Airport, Old Bahama Bay Hotel, Viva Wyndham Fortuna Hotel, Pelican Bay, Bahamas Brewery, Grand Bahama Perfume Factory, encountered and swam with dolphins and attended the Junaknoo Summer Festival.
“The Bahamas is the leading destination in the Caribbean region for general aviation and in 2018, recorded historic levels of growth in that sector,” said Rolle. “We are proud of our achievement, but not yet satisfied. We are working feverishly on innovative ways to exceed the expectations of private pilots and FBO operators and to creating mutually rewarding opportunities for growth for our clients. In 2019, we fully intend to outperform our 2018 historic arrival record.”