Minister Grant addressing stakeholders. SKNIS Photo

St. Kitts and Nevis’ Minister of Tourism, the Honourable Lindsay Grant, praised moves being made by tourism-related businesses which increasingly catering to foreign language visitors to the Federation while delivering remarks at the Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) Operations Committee Meeting held at the St. Kitts Marriott Resort on Monday.

Minister Grant specifically highlighted Kantours and the St. Kitts Scenic Railway as two local businesses that have made tangible steps toward improving the guest experience.

Beginning Dec. 6, the St. Kitts Scenic Railway is set to launch audio recordings in Spanish, French, Italian and German highlighting historical information on sites of interest and other attractions that prominently feature in its world-famous train and bus tours.

Kantours also features recordings in those four languages during its island tours. Occasionally, during Kantours’ island excursions, interpreters translate.

“What we know as the norm is no longer going to give us a competitive edge,” Minister Grant said, noting that other Caribbean islands also have sun, sea and sand. “We must identify those unique elements of our destination and package them with our friendliness and excellent service to offer a world-class experience, in order to continually reap the full economic benefits from our tourism industry.”

The minister of tourism told those in attendance being able to communicate with visitors in their respective languages will help to improve the guest experience. With this in mind, the Ministry of Tourism will assist and encourage stakeholders to enhance their customer service by facilitating information in Spanish, French, Italian and German for their guests and customers over the next 12 months.

Monday’s meeting was attended by officials from the St. Christopher Air and Sea Ports Authority (SCASPA) and the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force, as well as representatives of the Ministry of Tourism and the St. Kitts Tourism Authority.

Taxi drivers, tour operators, hoteliers, restaurant owners, vendors, and others who ply their trade in the tourism sector were also present. Executives from Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, Carnival Cruise Line and MSC Cruises also participated in the meeting.