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Bahamas Taps Into New Canadian Market

left to right: Scott Reid, Business Development Manager -- Sunwing Vacations; Cameron Hepple, District Manager -- Bahamas Tourist Office, Canada, Barbara Crowell, Owner -- Ixtapa Travel; Carmel Churchill, Director, Marketing Services -- Grand Bahama Island Tourism Board; Steven Johnson, Sr. Regional Manager -- Bahamas Tourist Office, CanadaClick here for high-resolution version

NASSAU, BAHAMAS--(Marketwired - September 12, 2016) - The Islands Of The Bahamas have tapped into a new Canadian market with the introduction of a new flight service from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan in west-central Canada.

Sunwing Vacations is one of Canada's leading tour operators with an impressive fleet of fuel-efficient Boeing 737 - 800s aircraft.

After testing the market in February 2015, with non-stop flights from Regina, Sunwing Airlines is increasing its stake in Grand Bahama Island by adding weekly direct flights from Saskatoon.

Paul Strachan, Senior Director of Bahamas Tourist Office Canada said the added services will increase visitor arrivals from Saskatchewan, especially during the winter months.

"We're very optimistic that these flights will greatly support our strategy to generate incremental business from new markets in Canada. Regina and Saskatoon are the two largest cities in the Western province of Saskatchewan; markets where consumers are looking for 'new' sun destinations to experience this winter season," Strachan said.

Joy Jibrulu, Director General of the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism believes that the added service is an example of solid partnership relations. "The strong partnership between The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism and the Sunwing Travel Group has resulted in greatly increased market to Grand Bahama Island (GBI) from both the Canadian and the United States markets," she said.

"The nonstop flights to GBI from Saskatoon and Regina are the most recent examples of The Bahamas taking a further step to increase visitor arrivals from the Canadian market."

On September 6 - 7, 2016 officials from the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism promoted the new flight services and vacation packages offered by Sunwing in both Regina and Saskatoon. Both events were well attended with travel agents showing their enthusiasm to sell a diverse product.

Representatives from The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism and Grand Bahama Island Promotion Board were on hand to educate travel agents on the features, advantages and benefits of selling Grand Bahama Island to their clients.

At the Islands of The Bahamas presentation, at the Wascana Golf Club in Regina, Travel Agent Tammy Prost of Tropical Escapes Destination Weddings & Travel Inc was the lucky winner of a free trip to Grand Bahama Island. Prost said she can't wait to share her experience with her many clients.

"I had a wonderful evening at Regina's Grand Bahama presentation and I am so thankful that my name was picked for the fabulous trip. I am super excited to send my clients there and I can't wait to visit and experience this destination and the Memories Resort," Prost said.

This is the first time that The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism has heavily promoted its services in the province of Saskatchewan. The marketing tour continues with consumer shows on September 8th and 10th . Approximately 3,500 consumers are expected to attend the events.

There are also several meetings organized with top producing agencies in Regina and Saskatoon to promote the following niche markets for Grand Bahama: Sports Tourism, Weddings & Honeymoons, Diving, Fishing, Soft Adventure; Groups, Meetings and Incentives.

The Islands Of The Bahamas have a place in the sun for everyone from Nassau and Paradise Island to Grand Bahama to The Abaco Islands, The Exuma Islands, Harbour Island, Long Island and others. Each island has its own personality and attractions for a variety of vacation styles with some of the world's best scuba diving, fishing, sailing, boating, as well as, shopping and dining. The destination offers an easily accessible tropical getaway and provides convenience for travelers with preclearance through U.S. customs and immigration, and the Bahamian dollar is on par with the U.S. dollar. Do everything or do nothing, just remember It's Better in The Bahamas. For more information on travel packages, activities and accommodations, call 1-800-Bahamas or visit www.Bahamas.com. Look for The Bahamas on the web on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

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