4 Sep 2014

Vanuatu encouraging cruise visitors to return

8:15 pm on 4 September 2014

The Department of Tourism in Vanuatu says it is taking steps to ensure it can entice some of the many cruise ship visitors back to the country.

A new report shows cruise tourism is bringing over 31 million US dollars into the Vanuatu economy each year, and there are twice as many visitors arriving by ship than by air.

The Director of Tourism in Vanuatu, George Borugu, says the government has invested in a number of areas to improve the experience for cruise ship visitors.

240414. Photo RNZ. Vanuatu, Port Vila, cafe, tourism

240414. Photo RNZ. Vanuatu, Port Vila, cafe, tourism Photo: RNZ

He says the large number of cruise ship tourists is a great opportunity to market Vanuatu as a place tourists should return to for a longer stay.

"Although they only spend one day here, we can capitalise on that increase to introduce programmes that will likely get them back by air."

George Borugu says improvements are being made to the Port Vila wharf to allow larger ships to berth, the main wharf and seafront area are being beautified, and a new handicraft centre is being built.