Our Readers' Opinions
February 12, 2016

SVG needs to consider educated, affluent tourists

Editor: My wife and I are elderly Vincentians living on the Leeward side of the island. Our son and daughter have lived abroad for many years and each revisited us, separately, recently, after an absence of more than two decades. {{more}}Our son has a small successful business and was scouting the island with the prospect of bringing a group of his better employees back to his home island for a vacation, at his cost.

He decided to book a week in Jamaica instead. He said he would have been too embarrassed for his employees to see what the capital city of his homeland looked like.

Our daughter is an independent business lady whose work responsibilities require her to travel to Canada and Europe, as well as widely throughout the US She was shocked and dismayed at the lines in the banks, revolted by the public toilets, found that neither of the two credit cards she has used throughout her travels for years abroad were accepted at any of the stores she shopped at here, and complained that the customer service in the shops in town was somewhere between incompetent and indifferent. She cut short a planned three– week stay, left after one week and firmly stated that if we wanted to see her again, we will need to come to visit her—there was no way she was setting foot back in St Vincent and the Grenadines, and in fact urged us to leave and move to within some proximity to either herself or her brother, questioning the sanity of our decision to remain here.

We are, of course, saddened by these outcomes, but regretfully, not surprised. St Vincent and the Grenadines needs to consider educated, affluent tourists as a demographic to cultivate, not just diaspora re-visitors and cruise ship day-trippers.

Fred and Janet M