TPDCo of Jamaica Makes Preparation For A New Tourism

Executive Director of the Tourism Product Development Company, (TPDCo), Dr. Andrew Spencer, says the agency has refocused its operations and is now looking at a new model for the sector, post coronavirus (COVID-19).

“The fundamental difference in what we do now is that before we would have routine product quality assessment looking for some of the regular things that we would want an entity to have. Now, we have had to ramp up our team,” he told JIS News.

The team has increased from 11 product quality officers to about 70 personnel “who are going to be required to go out and assess every single entity before [it] can be certified to reopen,” Dr. Spencer said.

He noted that as the destination assurance agency of the Ministry of Tourism, TPDCo is leading the development of post COVID-19 protocols that will guide how the industry operates.

All segments of the sector are being targeted, including accommodation, attractions, water sports, craft shops, shopping, cruise ports, airports, contract carriage, restaurants and bars.

“You, technically, won’t be able to open your doors to guests until the TPDCo has come in, gone through its checklist, and ensured that you have your protocols in place. In fact, we are requesting, from every entity, three plans that will be plugged into our protocol,” Dr. Spencer said.

Each entity is expected to have an emergency plan, sanitation as well as social distancing protocols that are specific to its operations and approved by the TPDCo.