In an effort to improve the services of the tourism industry with greater efficiency and effectiveness, it has become necessary to streamline the BTB’s tour guide licensing procedure. It is very important that we ensure the people operating as tour guides are qualified, well trained and have the required competencies as per the industry standards to be tour guides. With that in mind, the new plan includes the issuance of new cards, re-designed with added security features, including hologram and color coding. Each destination will have its individual expiration date, which will be the last day of the assigned month, so as to streamline renewals and the BTB internal procedure. These new changes will be outlines in a series of destination consultations with the tour guide associations.
Other BTB News:
Site Visitations Yield Results
The Destination Panning Department of the Belize Tourism Board has recently launched a series of site visitations with the aim of focusing on specific site issues such as safety and security, tour operator and tour guide compliance and other general issues as it relates to site visitation and usage by our local guides and guests. These site visitations will include all parks, both marine and terrestrial. As a result of the assessment done from the first site visit at Caves Branch Nohoch Che’en Reserve, improvements can already be seen. The team has already responded with additional Tourism Police (TPU) presence so as to ensure compliance with guide to guest ratio. Equipment upgrade includes communication and transportation as well as improved signage. The much needed work on the access road to caves branch is underway through the good efforts of Ministry of Works.
New and Upgraded Visitor Centers Coming Soon!
The BTB’s Marketing Department has embarked on a much needed initiative, with the establishment of visitor centers in all destinations. The first two fully equipped and staffed visitor information booths will be completed in the upcoming weeks at both border points of Santa Elena and Benque Viejo. These two key locations are essential for visitor border crossings, particularly at our Western Border where European visitors arrivals into Belize is on the increase. Punta Gorda will receive a much needed facelift and upgrading of its current Visitor Information Center, currently run by the BTIA (Belize Tourism Industry Association). The first phase of the Punta Gorda visitor center is a tourism partnership between Border Management Agency (BMA) and the BTB. It is the intention of the BTB to have high quality and effective information centers in all destinations. Orange Walk Town in the North has more recently launched an ambitious plan for their visitor center with BTIA and Orange Walk Town Council.