Bermuda Earns “Safe Travels” Stamp Designation from Global Tourism Group
Thursday, August 27, 2020
Bermuda has earned a global stamp of approval for its handling of the COVID-19 pandemic to date and the high level of health and safety protocols across its tourism industry.
The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) has designated Bermuda a “Safe Travels” destination, under a programme that recognises governments, destinations and companies around the world that have adopted health and hygiene standards that meet protocols recommended by the World Health Organisation and the Centers for Disease Control. The designation follows an application to the WTTC by the Bermuda Tourism Authority (BTA) and allows Bermuda the privilege of using the council’s “Safe Travels” stamp—a globally recognised seal.
“Bermuda has taken safety seriously since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and is emerging as a top-of-mind destination for consumers ready to embrace travel again,” said BTA Interim CEO Glenn Jones. “Our community continues to enhance and elevate its protocols, protecting residents, while at the same time responsibly welcoming travellers to fully enjoy and experience the island.”
The BTA began the WTTC application process in June after gathering guidelines across tourism industry sectors to compile a consolidated resource. The resulting Tourism Health & Safety Guide, a living document that will update as guidelines change, aims to raise awareness among consumers—particularly travellers—about Bermuda’s successful management of the pandemic to date and assist local tourism businesses to align with effective global health and hygiene standards. Now sanctioned by the WTTC “Safe Travels” programme, the protocols aim to build trust and confidence and benefit travellers and islanders alike.
The BTA will use the endorsement and designation in its overseas marketing to consumers ready to travel again. Under the programme, the WTTC has also empowered the BTA to issue the Safe Travels stamp to local businesses that meet the highest COVID-19 public-health standards. Next month, the BTA will launch a submissions process so any tourism-related business properly protecting its customers by adhering to national protocols can earn the stamp and display it—telling the world their business is safe.
Stakeholders can expect more information in the coming weeks. In the meantime, industry partners are invited to access and download the guide from the BTA website for a full list of public-health guidelines across different tourism businesses—from transport, retail, and food & beverage to accommodation, boating, museums and other attractions and services.
Earlier this month, the Centers for Disease Control improved the island’s ranking to Level 2—making Bermuda one of only four places in the world assessed with a “moderate” COVID-19 risk level. And in the UK, the Foreign & Commonwealth Office has allowed British residents returning from Bermuda to forego a 14-day quarantine imposed on UK travellers coming back from many other regions.
Those official endorsements mirror visitor sentiment. In addition to Bermuda’s beaches, scenic beauty, weather and overall safety, travellers cited Bermuda’s reputation for managing COVID-19 as a key factor for choosing the destination, according to exit surveys with air visitors since the island welcomed back regularly scheduled commercial flights July 1. And 94.6 percent of visitors said they felt safe from the virus during their visit.
“Bermuda is close, safe and clean,” said Jones. “That’s the message we are sending to the world—and the science and metrics bear it out.”
About Bermuda Tourism Authority (BTA)
The Bermuda Tourism Authority (BTA) is an award-winning, accredited destination marketing organisation that promotes Bermuda internationally and works to empower our tourism industry stakeholders. Explore Bermuda’s National Tourism Plan at BermudaNTP.com