The Annual Vakantiebeurs, was held last week, January 9th – January 14th 2018 in Utrecht the Netherlands. This is a travel trade show which Saba has been attending for many years. Unfortunately, this year Director of Tourism Glenn Holm could not attend the show due to medical reasons, but Saba was still well represented by marketing company TVC, which has been working with Saba for over 20 years. Dahlia Hassell and Jarno Knijff, who have both worked for the Saba Conservation Foundation, also attended the show on the weekend and were able to use their experience and local knowledge to help promote the island.
The Vakantiebeurs is one of the most well-known trade shows in the Netherlands and the report from the organisation of the Jaarbeurs indicates a total of 105,000 visitors to the 2018 show. Statistics show that 70% of these visitors are interested in a vacation outside of Europe. Saba’s quick recovery and accessibility was promoted and visitors were intrigued to learn more about the destinations which were recently in the media with King Willem Alexander and Queen Maxima’s visit to the islands in early December. Commissioner Zagers was happy to hear about the big turn out to the show. He stated, “With the events of last year, it was important to show that Saba is still open and ready to receive visitors. TVC kept us updated and we were pleased with the interest shown in Saba. We hope to welcome some of these travelers to our island soon.”