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HomePeopleInconversationFiji to Reach 2019 Numbers in 2024: Kathy Koyamaibole, Regional Director (Asia...

Fiji to Reach 2019 Numbers in 2024: Kathy Koyamaibole, Regional Director (Asia and Pacific), Tourism Fiji

Fiji is building on the positive momentum post its successful reopening. Tourism Fiji recently partnered with Havas to execute the next phase of our strategic plan. Tourism Fiji recently launched Corporate Plan 2022-2024 targeting US$1.4 billion visitor revenue by 2024 

How is Fiji gearing up to revive tourism post-pandemic?

Fiji has one of the safest programs in the world as the ‘Care Fiji Commitment’. When we opened last December there was a requirement for every operator to be part of the Care Fiji Commitment. So, in terms of the product on the ground, that readiness is 100% ready.

Fiji was so resilient over the years in preparing to revive the tourism post pandemic. Tourism in Fiji is slowly recovering. We are here in India to connect with our partners again and also to tell them that Fiji is ready to welcome Indian guests. We’re picking up the low-hanging fruits with our partners who usually sell Australia in New Zealand because Fiji is an easy add-up from there. Ultimately, when things are totally restored, we’ll be pushing our sort of mono destination in Singapore, Hong Kong etc.

Tourism Fiji recently launched Corporate Plan 2022-2024 targeting US$1.4 billion visitor revenue by 2024. What are the main elements of the plan and how confident you are to achieve the target?

The Corporate Plan 2022-2024 was initiated by our CEO. As a strategy, Tourism Fiji is looking to reach 2019 tourist numbers in 2024. And one of the key drivers for that is to sustainably develop the destination. We are not only just targeting business to Fiji but ensuring that our on-ground infrastructure and support is able to support that. Because, initially when we opened, not all the operators were open. We are developing accessibility and supporting the ground component to complement it. We are totally focused on growing tourism sustainably.

You aim to achieve 447,000 International visitors in 2022. Where do you stand today i.e in the first 6 months of 2022?

I think we are close to that. So far, we’ve been hitting our monthly targets which is really good. We just look forward to growing constantly and continuously.

What is the new marketing and promotional strategy?

we also just appointed Havas as a global and media and creative agency. We just made the announcement literally just this week.  The agency will support Fiji’s post pandemic recovery as a destination, and implementation of Tourism Fiji’s strategic plan. The scope of work includes evolving Tourism Fiji’s ‘Where Happiness Finds you’ brand platform, supporting its strategic focus on sustainability, and leading on global media strategy and buying. The team will also help to build digital capabilities across the Tourism Fiji team and develop digital experiences across the visitor booking journey.  There are a couple of exciting things coming. It may head towards a new look and feel for the destination and our brand. So that should be happening really soon.

How do you see India as a market and what is your expectation from India in short-mid to long term? 

India has always been one of the strategic markets for us. Our short-haul markets will always provide the volume. So, all our long-haul markets will be the partners to hopefully provide volume but also yield for the destination. We obviously will always hope for healthy growth. But it’ll depend on the market conditions also.

How are you positioning Fiji in India post-pandemic?

Fiji is always going to be the most experiential destination. Fiji offers you more serene and more homely island experience. People think Fiji is just one island, but they don’t understand we have 333 islands. There are different personalities and different charms of the island. So, when you come to Fiji, don’t come to expect to be like shopping. It’s not a commercial, you need to literally come to Fiji to disconnect and reconnect with yourself and your family. We are a safe, visa-free destination. That’s a big deal for us. We are positioning Fiji as an experiential destination in the India market.

Which segments of the India market you are planning to tap?

Primarily, our targets have always been honeymooners and couples. Before pandemic, we saw kind of demand from families and MICE. We want to revive the family and the MICE business again. We’ve spoken to few partners to renew this. We are established now in honeymoon and couples’ segments and need to expand in families and MICE.


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