Source: Thomas Sitbon¸ PKF Malta
Tourism can be seen like a lever for growth and jobs¸ both of which Malta needs. The country’s economy cannot afford to ignore the tourism industry¸ which accounts for more than 15 percent of the country’s gross domestic product. Also¸ Valletta will be the European capital city of culture in 2018. It’s why The Ministry for Tourism and the Malta Tourism Authority have to help the tourism industry to grow¸ to higher in quality¸ and to be continually developed.
Currently¸ different projects could be studied. See the tourism like a product among some other¸ imagine you as marketer¸ and now ask you “How to improve the tourism product?”
If you want to bring tourist over Malta¸ nothing hard: Advertise widely abroad¸ and a crowd of tourist will flock. But do you want to spend a lot of money to have millions of tourist giving a bad reputation to our country? Because be sure it what will happen if we offer a bad “product”. Think about what you do when you are going abroad¸ and especially when you are going back. Your family¸ friends¸ colleagues¸ will ask you about your trip. If you spent a spooky holiday¸ and leave the country with a sour taste in your mouth¸ you will scare your friend about this destination. Is it what we want? No! Negative recommendations are disastrous. Positive recommendations are extremely important. Among other things¸ it avoids excessive expense in advertisement (more or less what we did¸ and we are still doing)¸ there is nothing better than the word of mouth.
So¸ no choice that gives to the tourists a good impression of Malta. It should not be so hard; we have a lot of arguments to expose. The main thing is a beautiful country. But it’s not enough. We have to work hard to satisfy the tourists¸ and work continually to develop the sightseeing¸ and enhance the product Malta.
It’s exactly what the ex chairman of the MTA Product Directorate¸ Frank Salt¸ tried to do in an article for the Times Of Malta.
His advice is easy: do what works in others touristic place!!!
Did you visit some place like Venice in Italia¸ Seville in Spain¸ or even some capital like Amsterdam? I’m sure you enjoyed so much these places¸ and you found it stunning. Yes¸ but it’s only because you have visited the touristic place that the authority have decided for you. Go off the beaten track¸ and you will see that the entire city is not as beautiful. If you visit London¸ you will talk how Notting Hill¸ Soho¸ Westminster… But you will not talk about the suburban; place than you would have even not crossed. Focus our efforts on some main place¸ and it is enough to give the best image to the tourist.
It is what we have to do¸ explain us Frank Salt. “I suggested that we designate about 28 areas in Malta and Gozo that we would call Tourism Priority Areas.” He wants to make of these areas a “paradise” for tourist. We will have our Piazza San Marco¸ Ramblas¸… too. These places will be perfectly maintained (cleaned¸ flowery¸ with benches …). Mdina¸ Spinola Bay¸ few streets in Valetta wi