Jamaica Revises Travel Advisor Program, Rewards Top Agents
Travel advisors looking to provide the best advice to Jamaica-bound clients
can tap into the destination’s newly updated and expanded One Love Rewards travel agent specialist program.
Unveiled on Feb. 14, the program features new content, a Spanish language version, and exclusive Main Street Jamaica coupons that clients can redeem for goods and services on the island. A new dashboard makes it easier for agents to see their courses and certificates in one place and update their
The online training program includes information on selling Jamaica to leisure travelers as well as destination weddings (the training program also offers the opportunity to become a wedding specialist) and tour and special interest groups.
Highlights include expanded information on Jamaica’s history, culture, cuisine, and attractions. Each region of the country is explored, including Montego Bay, Negril, Ocho Rios, Port Antonio, Kingston, and the South Coast.
In addition to educational material, the One Love Rewards portal includes a news feed with the latest travel information about Jamaica, information on current promotions and offers, contact information for suppliers and partners, and downloadable brochures and videos.
In December, the Jamaica Tourist Board rewarded top performers enrolled in the One Love Rewards program with a three-night getaway to the Ocean Coral Spring resort. The annual One Love Affair for top-selling Jamaica Travel Specialists hosted a record 70 travel advisors, including 50 from the U.S. and 20 from Canada.
The weekend include a welcome reception, catamaran and snorkel cruise, dining and shopping, and an awards ceremony held at Ocean Coral Spring Showtime Theater and Conference Center.
More than 33,000 travel advisors have graduated from the Jamaica Travel Specialist program.
Isolation Rules Eased for Jamaica Travelers Who Test Positive for COVID-19
Travelers who test positive for COVID-19 in Jamaica still face an isolation period before being allowed to move freely in the country or return home, but can now exit isolation after five days if they are asymptomatic or exhibit only mild symptoms that are resolving, tourism officials announced Jan. 21.
“We are very pleased to be able to offer U.S. visitors who test positive while on island the possibility of a shorter isolation period in keeping with the new [U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] guidelines,” said Edmund Bartlett, the minister of tourism for Jamaica.
Previously, a 10-day isolation period — typically in a hotel room — was mandated for travelers who tested positive for COVID-19 in Jamaica. Under the new rules, individuals who remain symptomatic must still complete the full 10 days of isolation, but those with no symptoms or with symptoms consider to be resolving by a physician can exit isolation earlier.
Travelers who are departing Jamaica can exit isolation as long as they proceed directly to their flight, according to Jamaica’s Ministry of Health and Wellness.
New Flights and Culture Put Spotlight on Jamaica’s Capital
American Airlines’ new service from Philadelphia to Kingston arrives just as the Jamaican capital is honored as one of the world’s top destinations for cultural tourism.
The inaugural American Airlines flight from Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) to Kingston’s Norman Manley International Airport (KIN) landed on Nov. 4. The new nonstop service operates year-round, three times per week on Mondays, Thursdays and Sundays.
“As passengers have resumed their travel, the top destinations we’ve seen people traveling to are those that have sun, sand and beaches and also those where they can visit their families and friends,” said Jim Tyrrell, chief revenue officer at Philadelphia International Airport. “Kingston checks all the boxes. It is beautiful and also was one of the top unserved family and friends’ destinations out of Philadelphia. Now they can fly out of a hometown airport and get to the friends and beaches much quicker.”
Tourism officials stressed the flight’s importance to members of the Jamaican diaspora in the Northeast U.S., but the added service also should be attractive to travelers who value local culture.
Travel advisors should particularly take note of the events taking place in Kingston around Jamaica’s celebration of 60 years of independence. Kingston also is an emerging cruise destination, with the Naval Dockyard at Port Royal expanding with a new museum and restaurant, and looking to bring in larger cruise ships.
Travelers looking for a familiar hotel brand in Kingston can be steered toward the ROK Hotel, which is part of Hilton’s Tapestry Collection and scheduled to open on May 31. The 168-room hotel will be located on the city’s waterfront and feature an outdoor pool, bar, fitness center, and three restaurants. An AC Hotel by Marriott also opened in Kingston in 2019.
Jamaican Air Travel Adds
In addition to American Airlines’ new flights between Philadelphia and Kingston, the carrier also plans to add a new route between Austin, Texas, and Montego Bay on June 11.
Frontier Airlines has added service between Montego Bay and Miami, Atlanta, and Orlando, and Southwest Airlines plans to begin daily service between Chicago and Montego Bay on June 5.
JetBlue also has announced a major expansion in its Jamaica service in June, with up to five new daily nonstop flights from New York/JFK to Kingston, and up to four daily nonstop flights from JFK to Montego Bay.
New All-Inclusive Comes to Trelawny
Spanish hotel company Ocean by H10 Hotels has opened a new adults-only all-inclusive resort in Trelawny near Montego Bay. The 444-room Ocean Eden Resort, which debuted in January, has a pool, four restaurants, four bars, and rooms ranging from junior suites and swim-up rooms to rooftop accommodations with private jacuzzis on the balconies.