Honiara, Solomon Islands – With just days to go before the 2019 ‘Me Save Solo’ tourism exchange kicks off in Honiara, Tourism Solomons has confirmed international buyer attendance at the event has gone well beyond expectations.
Close on 40 international buyers are confirmed to meet with more than 30 local sellers at the event taking place at the Institute of Tourism in the Solomon Islands National University campus on 05 July.
The overseas contingent includes representatives from Australia, Denmark, Fiji, Japan, Kiribati, Korea, Nauru, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Taiwan and the United States.
Thanking Solomon Airlines and the Australian Government-backed local business initiative Strongim Bisnis for their support in helping Tourism Solomons deliver the event, CEO, Josefa ‘Jo’ Tuamoto said the response from the international delegates fully underlined the interest the destination is garnering in overseas markets.
“I am particularly gratified to see several of the smaller South Pacific nations’ tourist offices take up our open invitation to join in,” Mr Tuamoto said.
“The opportunity to exhibit at other of the larger South Pacific nations’ tourism exchanges dried up several years ago,” Mr Tuamoto said.
“And as one of the smaller South Pacific nations we know exactly what it feels like.
“In order to help give our neighbours the start we have been fortunate to achieve with our own events, we have, in the truest spirit of South Pacific unity, welcomed them to join with us and share the benefits.”
As in 2018, almost all the international delegates will stay on to participate in a series of ‘beyond Honiara’ educational study tours visiting Gizo and Munda in the Western Province, the Marovo Lagoon, Marau Sound and Malaita.
The study tours will also give those participants travelling via Munda their first opportunity to see the developments that have taken place there recently allowing Solomon Airlines to operate its flagship Airbus A-320 into the Western Province, in the process creating a brand new international gateway for the Solomon Islands.
“The essence of these post-tourism exchange programs is to instil a very clear image in all participants’ knowledge banks of exactly what we have to offer,” Mr Tuamoto said.
“The Solomon Islands is very much a series of destinations within the one destination offering a plethora of unique and very niche travel experiences.”