Bonaire Rolls Out a Big Welcome
and Visitor Awareness Program
The turtles aren't the only friendly residents of the Bonaire area; islanders too are working to assure tourists feel welcome.*
Bonaire, one of the ABC islands (Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao) in the southern Dutch Caribbean has launched a new Tourism Awareness Program. The island's goal is to assure cruisers and other visitors continue to receive what they most expect to receive on vacation -- a smile and a friendly attitude from the islands' residents.
Tourism Corporation Bonaire and the island's government have launched the new three-year initiative. The program will educate the Bonairean community about the importance of tourism to the island. It will also encourage small acts of kindness such as greeting visitors with a smile.
One program component already in place includes the official slogan “Smile, Boneiru ta Dushi,” which translates in English to “Smile, Bonaire is Sweet." This 30-second jingle is played on local radio stations.
In addition, the island already has a mascot named Mama Smile. She will promote the program by visiting residents around the island with Bonairean community ambassadors.
Visitors like these come to Bonaire for snorkeling and scuba diving.*
Other goals of the Tourism Awareness Program are to inform the Bonairean community about the uniqueness of the tourism product; the island's economic dependence on tourism; how Bonaire’s eco, nature and marine preservation efforts affect tourism; that hospitality is more than a place to stay; understanding changes in tourism; and the importance of service with a smile.
“We are pleased to offer such a one-of-a-kind program to the Bonairean community,” said Ronella Croes, director of Tourism Corporation Bonaire. “By encouraging our residents to make the extra effort in welcoming our visitors, we hope to see a continued growth of repeat visitors to the island who will surely remember our miles of smiles among all of the other natural beauty Bonaire has to offer.”
For more information about Bonaire, contact the Tourism Corporation Bonaire at 800-BONAIRE.
*All photos are owned, copyrighted and used with permission of the Tourism Corporation Bonaire. All rights reserved. Do not copy or link to these photos. Thank you.