AGENCY SAYS FIJI TOURISM LACKS CULTURAL ATTRACTIONS

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SUVA, Fiji (Fiji Times, Mar. 1) - A research by the Fiji Visitors Bureau has found there are not enough Fijian activities to entertain tourists.

The research was done by Australian company Stollznow, which spoke to four mini groups of professional conference organizers in Australia, two mini groups in Sydney, and two in Melbourne.

The results of the report were released early this month after the Fiji Visitors Bureau commissioned it. It was made to determine what Australian buyers needed from Fiji products in terms of the meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions in Fiji.

According to the report, the problem with Fijian activities was that it was hard to occupy a group for more than four nights – visitors wanted inspired activities where the experience must be memorable.

There is a lack of meaningful cultural experience and there was a need for a greater variety to be offered.

The report stated there were only a few good Fijian destination-marketing companies but the researchers felt local companies could come up with inspired ideas and be more pro-active, and help put inspirational events together.

The report stated that cost and quality of food was a problem and it was cheaper to bring in their own wine.

The report added that the challenge for Fiji was to convince the professional conference organizers that the country was serious about their business.

Stollznow said Fiji was not on the map in 2001 but in 2006 it was a serious player because the Asian safety issue helped.

There was room to grow and prosper, and there was also room to lose business to Asia.

The findings stated that the bureau was known and respected. The key deliveries were in place and all they needed was that little extra effort.

March 2, 2006

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