What is the Bermuda Tourism Authority?
The Bermuda Tourism Authority (BTA) is an independent, private, Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) formed in 2014 to be the singular voice that restores and evolves Bermuda as a world-class tourism destination.
What is a DMO?
A DMO is a destination marketing organisation or convention and visitor bureau that promotes a town, city, region or country in convention sales, tourism marketing and services. Such organisations promote economic development of a destination by increasing visits from leisure and business travellers, which generates overnight lodging, visits to restaurants and shopping revenues. A DMO also shapes long-term travel and tourism strategies for a destination. In October 2018, the Bermuda Tourism Authority released Bermuda's National Tourism Plan, the first countrywide plan for tourism since 2012.
What is the Bermuda Tourism Authority Act?
The Bermuda Tourism Authority Act 2013 is the legislation that legally created the Tourism Authority. It was tabled and passed in the House of Assembly in September 2013 and in the Senate on October 7, 2013.
Is the Bermuda Tourism Authority a Government entity?
No, not at all. It is a private sector entity that has been established specifically to keep politics out of tourism-related decisions. The BTA follows DMO best practices and has earned international accreditation from Destination Marketing Association International. This is a highly coveted designation held by less than 20% of global destinations.
How is the Bermuda Tourism Authority different from the Bermuda Department of Tourism?
The Bermuda Department of Tourism was a Government department and the Bermuda Tourism Authority is a private DMO run independently by industry experts, a move which aides in de-politicizing tourism for the island. The belief shared across political parties was that a properly structured, research-based DMO is best suited to revitalise tourism in Bermuda.
What's the difference between the Bermuda Tourism Board and the Bermuda Tourism Authority?
The Bermuda Tourism Board (BTB) was created in 2012 as a non-political organisation to direct the Bermuda Department of Tourism’s efforts in the promotion of Bermuda’s tourism product. The BTB ceased to exist once the BTA Board was convened.
How is the Bermuda Tourism Authority structured?
The new enterprise is led by a Chief Executive Officer and consists of four divisions:
The BTA’s functions and services are managed within the divisions including: investment and funding; branding, sales and marketing; product development; tourism research. These functions are in addition to those previously undertaken by the Bermuda Department of Tourism and reflect the priorities of the National Tourism Plan.
What is the strategic vision of the Bermuda Tourism Authority?
The BTA is strategic in its allocation of resources, takes select risks and moves quickly to capture the opportunities afforded by growing global tourism demand. It's five-year strategic plan is articulated in the National Tourism Plan.
How many people work for the Bermuda Tourism Authority?
There are 42 full-time employees at the Bermuda Tourism Authority of which 91% are Bermudian or spouses of Bermudians.
The BTA empowers its team to be customer-focused, proactive, solution-oriented and to make decisions that are in the best interest of Bermuda as a tourism destination.
How does the Bermuda Tourism Authority positively impact tourism?
Each of the BTA’s divisions has a specific set of key objectives designed to positively impact tourism in Bermuda:
The Sales and Marketing team is largely focused on increasing air arrivals to Bermuda because air visitors have the greatest impact on the tourism economy through spending.
The Product and Experiences team uses Bermuda’s distinct assets to create core products that enhance the experience of visitors and establish a competitive advantage for the country’s tourism product.
The Operations division oversees all corporate functions of the organisation from human resources to finance to IT. Operations is simultaneously responsible for the deployment of national service training standards and supports the development, growth and sustainability of Bermudians in the hospitality industry.
The Research and Business Intelligence unit guides the BTA in making research-based decisions that are responsive to consumer demand and drive marketing decisions.
How is the Bermuda Tourism Authority funded?
Government provides a grant to the BTA similar to the way it funded the former Department of Tourism. The BTA also collects funds, as the former Tourism Board did, through the guest fee (4.5 per cent) charged to hotel and vacation rental guests.
What is the Bermuda Tourism Authority's budget?
2018 - $34.1 million = $26 million (Gov Grant) + $8.1 million (Guest Fee)
2017 - $32.9 million = $25 million (Gov Grant) + $7.9 million (Guest Fee)
* The Tourism Authority Fee is 4.5% as of May 2016
How can I get funding for an idea I have to improve visitors' experience when on-island? Does my business qualify for Bermuda Tourism Authority support as a Tourism experience?
Refer to the Tourism Experiences Investment Process for details.
What sponsorship opportunities does the Bermuda Tourism Authority offer?
The Bermuda Tourism Authority may sponsor Experiences that enhance the overall tourism product, attracts visitors to the island and gives them something to do while on the island.
There are three (3) categories in which funding may be provided:
- Sports – Sporting event/experience which attract visitors to Bermuda.
- Arts/ Culture – Tours/experiences that showcase and highlight Bermuda’s rich cultural offerings.
- New Experiences – A unique nature/ beach/ other offering that provides a memorable, authentic Bermuda experience.
Priority will be given to those experiences that are annual and highly competitive. You can ensure that your programme is ranked accordingly if it has the ability to include any of the following elements:
•A unique experience
•Applications with a viable business/marketing plan
•Alignment with target visitor expectations or filling an identified product gap
•The attraction of international visitors travelling specifically for an event
•Sustainability, i.e. is not a "one-off"
•An increase in the visitor’s length of stay and daily spend
•Multiple sources of funding, i.e. beyond solely BTA
•Provision of matching funds
•Has letters of support (2 required)
•Experiences that align with the Bermuda National Tourism Plan
•A celebrity, sporting personality, or prizewinning artist attending or participating in an event or programme
How can I receive and/or apply for support from the Bermuda Tourism Authority?
Funding requests for up to $75,000 will be considered. Applicants applying to the Bermuda Tourism Authority for Experiences Investment support should apply here.
What training programmes does the Bermuda Tourism Authority offer to tourism businesses?
The BTA is the driving force behind the Certified Tourism Ambassador Programme which has almost 1,000 trained men and women on the front line of the tourism industry as part of a national standard of excellence designed to set Bermuda apart from its peers in the realm of visitor service.
Meantime, the Product and Experience team holds workshops each year to support entrepreneurs with homegrown ideas as they prepare their applications for investment funding.
How can I access tourism research and reports regarding the Bermuda tourism industry?
As part of the BTA’s commitment to transparency, visitor statistics are released on a quarterly a basis and are available on the Research & Reports section of our website. Meantime, monthly, annual and more sensitive research data is availalbe to tourism stakeholders via BTAConnect.
Who will be in charge of the Bermuda Tourism Authority?
The Bermuda Tourism Authority has its own Board of Directors . The Authority's Chief Executive Officer is Kevin Dallas.
Since the Bermuda Tourism Authority’s inception in April of 2014, it has demonstrated a commitment to transparency, and as of April 2015, it has fully complied with Public Access to Information (PATI) legislation.