BVI News

‘Xmas in July’ a success and helping to improve tourism off-season

From left: Junior Tourism Minister for Tourism and Representative for the Sixth District, Honourable Alvera Maduro-Caines; Representative for the Ninth District, Honourable Vincent Wheatley; Deputy Premier, Minister for Communications and Works and Representative for the Fifth District, Honourable Kye Rymer; and Premier of the Virgin Islands and Representative for the Seventh District, Dr the Honourable Natalio Wheatley. (Photo credit: Facebook)

Premier and Minister for Tourism Dr Natalio Wheatley has hailed the recent Xmas in July event as a “major success” and said these types of events contribute to the territory’s changing tourism offseason.

The Tourism Minister commended the organisers, the BVI Tourist Board (local and Puerto Rican offices), Marcos Rivera and Wally Castro Marine for the successful event, which attracted approximately 400 boats and 4,000 patrons.

Dr Wheatley also expressed gratitude to the various government departments including Immigration and Her Majesty’s Customs for facilitating entry into the Virgin Islands, along with the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force, the Virgin Islands Fire and Rescue Services, and the Virgin Islands Search and Rescue team for helping to ensure that the event was incident-free.

“Many will agree that the event was a major success as a result of the partnership of the BVI Tourist Board and our tourism industry partners,” Dr Wheatley said.

Director of the BVI Tourist Board, Clive McCoy also expressed gratitude to industry partners stating: “A hearty thank you goes out to all of our stakeholders, especially the Virgin Gorda community that helped make Christmas in July a rousing success!”

The Christmas in July event ran from July 22-25.

Meanwhile, Premier Wheatley delivered an update on Virgin Islands tourism at the Sixth Sitting of the Fourth Session of the Fourth House of Assembly on July 21.

In his address, the Premier stated that the tourism off-season is changing and that this can be attributed to events like Xmas in July, One VI Poker Run, BVI Summer Sizzle and the BVI Emancipation celebrations.

“Tourism Industry Partners (TIPs) are reporting positive guest numbers as far down as September — where normally the season traditionally slowed down in May or June,” the Premier noted.

The Virgin Islands welcomed more than 202,000 visitors over the first four months of 2022. These comprised 140,000 cruise visitors, 60,268 overnight guests, and 1,949 day-trippers. The numbers, the Premier said, illustrate that BVI Tourism continues to have a healthy resurgence.

In the meantime, Director McCoy said the Tourist Board is feverishly preparing for the start of the upcoming peak season, which promises to be as analysts have predicted, “a return to pre-COVID-19 travel patterns.”


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  1. Hmm says:

    The devil is a liar. Stop x’ing out Christ. That’s why the country going hell!

    Like 4
    Dislike 10
  2. Success? says:

    is relative. The nearby USVI reports approx. 621,000 visitors in the first 4 months of 2022. BVI suffers from a damaged tourist 2022 season due to all the scandalous events during those months such as the Customs raids on the VG marina, Dream Yacht fleet, Moorings/Sunsail fleet and the Premier’s arrest in Miami.

  3. In spite of says:

    The event was a success in spite of BVI Govt not because of it.

    Like 10
  4. @Hmmm says:

    Really? This event has nothing to do with Christ. It is just a commercial enterprise, a bit like Christmas itself, which was originally a pagan celebration of the winter solstice.

    Like 1
    Dislike 2
  5. Anonymous says:

    This event was a complete success! I can’t wait for next year🎅🏻🇸🇭❤️

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