NADI, (FIJI TIMES) — The task of bringing more than 1500 Taiwanese tourists to Fiji has not been easy, says Rosie Holidays managing director Tony Whitton.
This week, two chartered flights out of Beijing and Taipei landed at the Nadi International Airport with more scheduled to arrive in the coming weeks.
Whitton said Taiwan was a completely new destination which had close to 12 million outbound travellers every year.
“This is a market that we have been developing for the past four years and this (charter flights) is now the fruits of those sales missions,” he said.
“To actually have a dedicated non-stop flight from Taipei to Nadi is a very important milestone in our tourism and national history.”
He said one of the major challenges was creating awareness in a country where people did not know much about Fiji.
Apart from this, they also faced stiff competition from other popular tourist hot-spots.
“We have to remember that we are not the only country in the world pitching to these travellers; there’s Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mauritius and Seychelles.
“Our competitors are trying to lure the Taiwanese traveller.”
He said to be able to get travellers to board a plane, travel for 12 hours to a new destination had been an extraordinary feat.
“So we’re doing five-night and seven-night packages and this involves them staying in the Denarau area.
“Every day, there will be different activities. So we are doing river safaris and Captain Cook day cruises and we’re doing a whole host of other activities to keep them occupied because this is a market that wants new experiences.
“We want to make sure their days are enriched with unique experiences and we are very confident that people will come and fall in love with our people and indigenous culture,” he said.