Oranjestad, Aruba "“ May 12, 2006 "“ "Great people, great sun, great fun!" This is how many guests describe the island where happiness lives, as the Aruba Tourism Authority (ATA) proudly announces the addition of video testimonials on www.aruba.com. The addition of the testimonials to the destination's Web site was to illustrate the consistently positive reaction to Aruba firsthand from travelers vacationing on island. Aruba's video testimonials run the gamut, showcasing the island's diverse visitors from traveling couples of all ages, to jet setting families and globetrotting girlfriends.
Aruba's video testimonials were filmed in January 2006 and the visitors who participated were selected at random during their vacations. When approached, ATA explained that they were requesting guest feedback for use on the destination's Web site. Currently, there are 22 testimonials available online. The campaign, launched in March, is already a success as early results showed click-through rates three times higher then earlier in the year.
Below are excerpts from some of the Aruba.com testimonials:
Â· "So we came the first year and we we're hooked and every time we keep coming for longer and longer and longer. Actually, we're hoping to retire here."
Â· "This is a place we feel comfortable to have our family. And then we've decided to bring our extended families. It really is a family island."
Â· "I think this is, for the tourist who comes here, the best value for their dollar and it is the best all around Caribbean experience."
Â· "The people here are so friendly. And they welcome you no matter where you're from or what you do. They're wonderful."
"We wanted to offer potential visitors a unique way to learn about Aruba and we knew the most effective way to do that was to offer the option of hearing other travelers impressions firsthand,” said managing director for the Aruba Tourism Authority, Myrna Jansen. “What better way to get a feel for a destination than by hearing what other guests experienced while visiting? We knew that in asking our visitors what they thought of their time on island, we would not only get valuable feedback about what is working and what may not be, but also that these testimonials would offer prospective travelers an unbiased feel for what an Aruba vacation is really like."
Aruba, where happiness lives, is truly a vacationer’s paradise. Located only two-and-a-half hours by air from Miami and four hours from New York City, the island is ideally situated outside the hurricane belt and boasts year-round cooling trade winds and perfect weather with average annual temperatures of 82 Fahrenheit and less than 20 inches of rainfall per year. Aruba serves up 27 luxurious hotels/resorts, championship golf courses, sumptuous spas, vibrant casinos, extraordinary international cuisine, exclusive shops and boutiques, exciting land and water activities, unique cultural to-dos, world-famous music festivals and events and more. The backdrop of a pristine tropical escape coupled with the unforgettable hospitality of the islands people keep Aruba's first-time guests delighted and its repeat visitor rate at 40%, the highest of any Caribbean destination. For more information on planning a trip to Aruba, contact the Aruba Tourism Authority at 1-800-TO-ARUBA or visit www.aruba.com.
The U.S. State Department and the Department Homeland Security recently announced the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, which will require all U.S. citizens and foreign nationals, to carry a passport or other accepted secure documents to enter or re-enter the U.S. from vacations or business travel anywhere in the Caribbean effective December 31, 2006. This requirement is applied to all air and sea travel. The Aruba Tourism Authority, in an effort to assist its valued visitors, strongly encourages all travelers to apply for their passports and advises all travelers to allow six to eight weeks to process U.S. passport applications in anticipation of their vacations to Aruba, where happiness lives. For more information on the new U.S. passport initiative, please visit www.travel.state.gov.
For more on Aruba at ITKT
I have to say that the US decision to alienate travelers and visitors to friendly nations does not help create security. Just a thought.