Monday, 18 January 2021

Covid-19 Update: Seychelles Becomes More Accessible

Seychelles becomes more accessible - Welcomes all vaccinated visitors

In an announcement widely welcomed by the tourism industry, the Indian Ocean archipelago has reviewed its entry requirements for visitors, making the destination immediately more accessible to travellers that have received both doses of the covid-19 vaccine. The review marks part of the restart of the island nation's tourism activities for 2021 and beyond.  

The announcement was made 
on Thursday, January 14, 2021 by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Tourism, Mr. Sylvestre Radegonde, during a joint press conference with his counterpart from the Ministry of Health, Mrs. Peggy Vidot. This follows the recent launch of the country's national immunisation campaign, which is expected to vaccinate roughly 70% of the local adult population by mid-March 2021. 

The new measures are to be implemented in two phases:

1) With immediate effect: 

Seychelles will open its borders to vaccinated visitors from any part of the world.

Vaccinated Visitors:
Visitors must be able to show that they have received two doses of an approved* covid-19 vaccine. They can only travel two weeks after they have received their second dose of the vaccine. Visitors must submit an authentic certificate from their national health authority as proof of 
covid-19 vaccination, together with a negative PCR test certificate obtained less than 72 hours prior to travelling to Seychelles. Infants and children may not be required to be vaccinated. However they will need to have a negative covid-19 PCR certificate taken not less than 72 hours before travel.

Vaccinated visitors may only stay in establishments or liveaboards that have been certified by the Public Health Authority. They will be allowed free movement but must follow all health protocols in place at their respective tourism accommodation/liveaboards. Vaccinated visitors will not be subjected to surveillance PCR test (usually done on the 6th day) once in Seychelles, however, their airline or final destination may require it.

Non-Vaccinated Visitors:
All visitors from countries that are currently permitted entry to Seychelles (Category 1 and 2, private jet passengers) will now need to submit a negative PCR test certificate obtained less than 72 hours prior to travel to Seychelles. Previously, visitors from Category 2 countries were required to submit a test no less than 48 hours prior to travel. 

Visitors may only stay in establishments or liveaboards that have been certified by the Public Health Authority. Upon arrival in Seychelles, visitors must stay in their first tourism accommodation/live aboard for 10 days** before leaving the tourism accommodation compound/live aboard.

Entry to Seychelles is still restricted to visitors that have not been fully vaccinated or are not travelling from a permitted country or via private jet. These measures will be in force until mid-March, when Seychelles is expected to have vaccinated the majority of its adult population. Strict health and safety measures, such as diligent sanitization, social distancing and wearing a mask will still apply.

2) Mid-March Onwards: 

Once the majority of the adult population in Seychelles has been vaccinated, the country will open its borders to all visitors - regardless of whether or not they have been vaccinated. All visitors will be required to submit a negative PCR test certificate, obtained less than 72 hours prior to travel.

Visitors are requested to continue to abide by the existing health measures (e.g. wearing of face masks, social distancing, etc) which will remain applicable as per the travel advisory published on the Department of Tourism's website. Similarly, all tourism operators will still be required to follow their existing covid-19 standard operating procedures and protocols.

More details about the new measures will be published in the Seychelles Travel Advisory in the coming days.

Submitted by the Seychelles Tourism Board
*The vaccine administered must be recognised by the Seychelles Public Health Authority. Certification for both vaccines and PCR tests must be submitted online via the Health Authorisation tool. 

**There is no minimum length of stay in place. Visitors staying in Seychelles for less than 6 days will not be subjected to surveillance PCR test, but must stay at a single accommodation establishment. Visitors staying Seychelles for less than 10 days will be required to take a surveillance PCR test on their 6th day and must stay at a single accommodation establishment. After 10 days (provided the result of their surveillance PCR test is negative) visitors are free to move to another accommodation establishment or island.

Tuesday, 12 January 2021

Industry New: Covid-19 Update

National COVID-19 Immunisation Campaign begins in Seychelles

Seychelles, one of the top tourist destinations for travellers, leaps towards immunization as the country launched its national COVID-19 Immunization Campaign on Sunday, January 10, 2021.

Being the first country in Africa to start a COVID-19 national vaccination program, Seychelles aims to be the first country in the world to vaccinate 70% of the over 18 years of age population in order to achieve herd immunity.

Leading by example, is the President of the Republic of Seychelles, H E Wavel Ramkalawan, as he takes the SinoPharm COVID-19 Vaccine, making him the first Head of State in Africa to take the first jab.

The campaign launch, held at the Seychelles Hospital started on a high note as about a hundred people including leaders, health workers, media personalities received their first shot of the SinoPharm COVID-19 showing their support towards the country’s immunization efforts.

Following the launch, the Ministry of Health will roll- out the administering of the Vaccine to key groups in the country as of Monday, January 11, 2021, starting with Health Care Workers and other front-line groups including the tourism industry operators.

President Ramkalawan restated the need for the country to unite as a nation and to rally behind the Health Authorities to help curb the spread of this deadly virus, protect the lives of all citizens and restore economic development in the country.

President Ramkalawan gave special thanks to the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan for the donation of 50,000 doses of the Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine, which was offered during President Ramkalawan’s visit to Abu Dhabi in December.

The President added that this gesture is a testimony to the friendly ties that exist between the two nations.

“With such a robust vaccination campaign, Seychelles aims to be the first country in the world to vaccinate at least 70% of its over 18 population. From there we will be able to declare Seychelles as being COVID safe,” President Ramkalawan emphasized.

The president added that the UAE Government would also be donating another batch of vaccines to the country soon.

President Ramkalawan also thanked the Indian Government for an offer of 100,000 doses of the Oxford Astra-Zeneca vaccine which is due to arrive in the country at the end of January.

Speaking of the vaccination Seychelles Minister for Foreign Affairs and Tourism, Mr Sylvestre Radegonde mentioned the importance of this move by the government for the industry.

"The COVID-19 immunization campaign is an important milestone for the restart of our tourism industry as the country balances its efforts to maintain its tourism activities and protect its population from further spread of the virus. The world has not come to a standstill and there are people who are still keen to travel. We need to fast rebuild our industry for our economic prosperity depends on it." said Minister Radegonde.

Minister Radegonde further restated the need for the tourism industry partners to remain vigilant for their safety and the safety of the population.

Submitted by Seychelles Tourism Board

Tuesday, 5 January 2021

Industry News: Covid-19 Update

The Seychelles International Airport will remain open for visitors as Seychelles steps-up measures to curb the spread of Covid-19

Seychelles authorities have announced new interim safety measures on Sunday, 3 January with the aim to curb the spread of Covid-19 within the community. 

The Seychelles International Airport will remain open for visitors, however, with revised conditions* of entry and stay for visitors from permitted countries.

As part of the new measures enforced and effective immediately:

  • Visitors already in Seychelles will be required to remain in one accommodation establishment for the first ten days of their stay in the destination and this measure extends to all new visitors entering Seychelles as of Sunday, January 3, 2021.
  • No transfer of accommodation will be permitted until the completion of the first 10 days of stay in one establishment.
  • Stand-alone restaurants will be closed. Restaurants within hotels and guest houses will remain open for their guests only. Other communal area recreational services within hotel premises including bars, swimming pools, spas and Kid’s club will also not be operational.
  • Inter-island travels are strongly discouraged.
  • Visitors coming by sea vessels will not be permitted to disembark on the Seychelles shores before ten days after the last port of call.
A strong plea has been made by the authorities for all service providers to maintain a high level of alert and reactiveness at all times.

The industry is reminded that wearing of a mask is mandatory in Seychelles. Any person failing to comply will be liable for legal actions.

Visitors are also reminded that they are not allowed to use public transport during their stay in Seychelles.

*Revised Conditions of Entry and Stay for Persons coming to Seychelles

Conditions for visitors arriving from Category 1 and Category 2 countries 
  • Pre-travel requirements for visitors coming Category 1 and Category 2 countries remain the same – time-bound negative pre-travel PCR test (sampled <48h from departure time for Category 2 arrivals, and <72h for Category 1 arrivals) and relevant health declarations.
  • All new arrivals must be transferred to hotels directly by certified transports.
  • Both Category 1 and Category 2 visitors must remain Hotel-bound for the first 10 nights from entry (except to attend a regional testing centre for day 6 PCR test). No transfers to other hotels/resorts will be allowed until the completion of 10 days.
  • Visitors in the country from earlier, but within 10 nights of entry, will be switched to new conditions, counting the days from their original date of arrival (i.e. a visitor who arrived 5 days ago, can move after another 5 days of stay).
  • PCR test after 5th night of stay (+/- one day) – a negative result does NOT change conditions of stay until after 10 nights. After the 10th night, movement is allowed outside the hotel premises; further PCR test is not mandated (unless ill or required for travel).
  • Excursions/trips can be organized by/through certified operators for only 1 family unit at a time. Maximum 6 in one group.
  • There is no minimum length of stay, as such:
  • Where departure is before completion 5 nights, the surveillance PCR is exempt.
  • Where departure from Seychelles is before 10 nights of stay and guests need exit PCR test, they can be taken by certified transports to regional testing venues to undergo tests and await the result in their hotel. On the day of departure, they should transfer to the airport through certified transports.
  • And where these guests do not need exit PCR test, they can be taken directly to the airport for departure by certified tourism transports.
  • Tourists who are having symptoms must consult their hotel/resort nurse/doctor/COVID-19 focal person, and subsequently plan further evaluation and/or testing under the guidance of the surveillance/ public health team. Testing of symptomatic individuals must preferably be done at fever clinics.

The industry is reminded that it is imperative they follow all guidelines applicable.

Submitted by the Ministry of Health and Seychelles Tourism Board. Please consult the Seychelles Travel Advisory or contact Mason's Travel for further information or clarifications.

Important Note : This is the current information that we have received from the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Tourism and the Seychelles Tourism Board. The situation remains fluid and is subject to change. 

Monday, 28 December 2020

Industry News: Covid-19 Update

Seychelles authorities take steps to address the new COVID19 variant

Following this week's Safe Tourism Task Force meeting led by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Tourism, Mr. Sylvestre Radegonde, the Public Health Authority has proposed new measures for the destination.

As of Monday, December 28, 2020, the United Kingdom will no longer feature on the list of countries from which visitors may travel to Seychelles.

As of December 31, 2020, South Africa will not feature on the list of countries permitted into the country.

Between Wednesday, December 23, 2020, to Thursday, December 31, 2020, all visitors arriving from South Africa will not be permitted to stay in their private residences. Visitors will have to book a Category 2 establishment for at least 10 days before being tested, and if negative, they may complete the remaining 4 days at their private residence or a Category 1 establishment.

These decisions follow recent developments, whereby the UK and South Africa are being affected by a new variant of COVID-19.

The measures will be effective until the end of January 2021 and will be subject to review before then.

Updates on travel measures and procedures to the destination can be viewed on the websites of the Tourism Department and Department of Health as well as Seychelles Travel Advisory page

Submitted by Seychelles Tourism Board

Monday, 21 December 2020

Hotel News

L’escale Resort Marina & Spa – A New Luxury “Stopover” in Seychelles

L’Escale Resort Marina & Spa is a brand new boutique resort due to open in January 2021. Situated at the site of the Ex Wharf Hotel, opposite Eden Island, it took almost 3 years for the project to move from conception to opening.

The resort is named after the term “l’escale” - French for “stopover” - that in turn was derived from the Latin word “scala”, reminiscent of the Ottoman Empire of the ports that were conquered by the Sultan. Used as a port of call to disembark boats, the modern terminology fittingly echoes this unique property as the ideal stopover for guests arriving to Seychelles by air, land or sea.

"Therein lies the concept at the heart of L’Escale Resort Marina & Spa: a luxury boutique hotel where you disconnect from the rest of the world to fully connect with the beauty of the Seychelles as you explore, relax and unwind safely in our care. With our perfect location on Mahé, we aim to be known as the preferred luxury stopover for your accommodation, yachting, culinary and wellness experiences,’’ explains Mr. Cyrille Carofano, General Manager of L’Escale Resort.

Centrally located on mainland Mahé, in close proximity to charming capital of Victoria and Eden Island, its architecture and interior style, is reminiscent of a resplendent luxury superyacht, with its clean lines and nautical touches. The resort is the signature work of Winch Design: a London based international and luxury design company, with an unparalleled reputation for creating iconic projects all around the world.

The upgrade to the marina directly in front of the resort was an integral part of the project. It is anticipated that L’Escale’s clientele will docking requirements for both superyachts and sail boats. The elegant and private marina is a flawless extension of the resort, designed to complement the aesthetics of its natural surroundings. L’Escale Resort is proudly one of the few hotels in the Seychelles that can cater to superyachts. The marina has the capacity to berth approximately 19 vessels, with a maximum length of 100 meters, through their state-of-the-art pontoons. Facilities such as power, water and a black water discharge services are available. 

The upgrade to the marina directly in front of the resort was an integral part of the project.

Seychelles’ newest boutique resort will feature only 25 luxurious guest rooms, including a Presidential Villa, a Penthouse and Spa Pool villas. Providing either a lush mountain or picturesque ocean view, all rooms are fitted with king-sized beds, complimentary Wi-Fi, 4K Smart TV, minibar, Theodor Tea, Nespresso Coffee, open terrace or balcony with lounges, and spacious bathrooms with luxury organic amenities and Hermès signature products for The Penthouse and Presidential Villa.

The Spa Pool Villas each have two bedrooms and a separate living and TV area. Guests will enjoy their private decks and plunge pools, and having their every need catered to by an attentive butler service.

The Penthouse is located on the top floor of the main building, easily accessible via an elevator. It offers a separate living and dining room ideally positioned between two spacious bedrooms, each with its own en suite bathroom and stunning ocean views. It comes with its own kitchen and butler area, and a private chef can be provided during the guests’ stay.

The Presidential Villa is a stand-alone, two-story building that embodies the epitome of the L’Escale brand with its lavish design, in-house amenities and services. The Royal Suite occupies the entirety of the top floor, with its adjoining bathroom being the largest available in the resort. A second bedroom, also boasting its own expansive living space and deluxe comforts, is located on the 1st floor whilst a large garage and lobby takes up the ground floor. Added features include a private elevator and spacious outside deck with a private infinity pool and Jacuzzi. 

The Presidential Villa is a stand-alone, two-story villa that embodies the epitome of the L’Escale brand.

The resort’s food and beverage facilities include an all-day dining restaurant where guests can enjoy a scrumptious breakfast with magnificent views of the cerulean waters of the marina. Lunch and dinner will feature international cuisine featuring a refreshing Creole touch.

The pearl of the resort, Eden Holistic Spa at L’Escale Resort completes your escape from the outside world and allows you to fully succumb to the peace and serenity of its surroundings. Its graceful layout incorporates the healing power of water through its design features, and its facilities include: single and double treatment rooms, a steam room, hamman, sauna, rasul (a thermal mud treatment), heated infinity pool, Jacuzzi, yoga room and fitness centre.

The resort will also cater for weddings and events, and promises to be a trendy new venue for clientele looking for a spectacular waterfront location in close proximity to Victoria and its surrounding suburbs.

Just a mere 10 minutes away from Seychelles International Airport, allow L’Escale Resort to be your first experience of the unique beauty and ambiance of the Seychelles islands. The team looks forward to welcoming guests, and guiding their first steps as they commence on a journey of discovery, luxury and escape.

Visit their website for more information:

Sunday, 20 December 2020

Hotels News

Find out what happens when you swap sleigh bells for seashells, as we reveal how some of Seychelles’ top hotels are celebrating the festive season in 2020:

Anyone choosing to escape the bitter cold of a northern hemisphere Christmas season is guaranteed a warm welcome on the shores of this island destination. Not only does the Seychelles enjoy year-round sunshine and an average temperature of 28 degrees, but our sunny Creole hospitality and vibrant island spirit are in abundant supply at this magical time of year. Retailers, restaurateurs and tourism establishments such as hotels and guests houses, hang out their brightest decorations – many creatively crafted from recycled and natural materials or inspired by the colours of the ocean.

Hotels are sure to delight their guests on Christmas and New Year’s Eve with gala dinners and fun-filled festive programmes for young and old. Some establishments, however, are breaking the mould to bring their guests a festive celebration that offers a true taste of the Seychelles.

Sugar and Spice at Four Seasons Seychelles:

The Four Seasons Resort in the exquisite south of Mahe is treating their guests to more than just deli-ghtful culinary pop-ups on Petit Anse (the hotel’s beautiful beach, where themed deli pop-ups, such us pitas, poke bowls, gourmet sandwiches and ice-cream burgers will be hosted). This year guests of the luxury resort can enjoy a festive spa treatment that uplifts the senses, using island-harvested cinnamon oil. . The journey starts at Le Syel Spa, with panoramic ocean views, a relaxing cinnamon bath alongside a cinnamon tea and cookies followed by a sugar body scrub to buff and beautify the skin leaving it refreshed and glowing for a deeply relaxing massage.

This award-winning spa offers blissful seclusion and holiday-themed treatments for both adults and children (because we all deserve a little pampering at Christmas time). 

Stunning views of Petit Anse from Le Syel Spa at Four Seasons Seychelles

A Little Out-of-the-Ordinary at Alphonse Island:

Out on the outer islands, Christmas celebrations are a little more out-of-the-ordinary at Alphonse Island. This fly-fishing Mecca attracts adventurous anglers and marine enthusiasts from across the globe to this far-flung island paradise. True to their unique guest-profile, their action-packed festive program invites the resort’s residents to really engage with the island’s remarkable marine environment, by offering unique activities such as manta experiences, snorkeling with sailfish and a festive Christmas lunch hosted on a remote sandbank. 

Alphonse Island's manta experience is one of the more unique festive season offers available in Seychelles this year

The Secret Ingredient is Love at Denis Private Island:

Christmas fare prepared with passion and finesse will be found across the Seychelles islands this festive season, as world-class chefs in some of the world’s leading hotels put into action the Christmas menus they’ve been planning for months. At Denis Private Island, however, Christmas dinner is not only prepared with enthusiasm and care by an award-winning culinary team – it is grown and reared with a fastidious commitment to quality and sustainability on the island’s own farm. Farm-to-table freshness is realised, as the resort’s chefs get first pick of the organic fruit and produce grown on the island, as well as premium cuts of meat and poultry that are hand-reared and lovingly provided for at the farm. Guests will be treated to a decadent array of traditional Christmas dishes, enhanced with island flavours and spices, grown just a short bicycle ride away from the resort’s main kitchen. 

Even Denis Island's youngest guests appreciate the farm-to-table freshness and quality available from the resort's restaurant

Get a Taste for (Modern) Seychelles at Le Nautique:

The annual seven-course New Year’s Eve tasting menu at La Digue’s premier waterfront boutique hotel gets an authentic Seychellois make-over this year. Guests at Le Nautique will be treated to a range of classical Creole dishes (with a modern twist), including freshly-caught red snapper served with heavenly island spices. This crash-course in Creole cuisine will have guests welcoming the new year with a new appreciation for Seychellois culture and our island produce.
Delectable red snapper - a highlight on Le Nautique's seven-course New Year's Ever Creole tasting menu

Full Moon Disco at Raffels Seychelles:

Over on Praslin, guests at the luxurious Raffles Seychelles will welcome 2021 in glittering style this New Year’s Eve, as their Takamaka Terrace takes centre stage to transform into a magnificent Full Moon Disco! The last night of the year will begin with an enchanting gala dinner, leading up to a dazzling Full Moon party with live music performances. It's an event that can't be missed! 

The Takamaka Terrace at Raffels Seychelles will be transformed into an enchanting Full Moon Disco, to welcome 2021

Island-Style Christmas Inspiration

Island-Style Mince Pies by Carana Beach Hotel:
Add a taste of the Seychelles Islands to your Christmas table this year

Since opening in 2016, Carana Beach Hotel has fast become a stand-out destination on Seychelles’ culinary map. With a reputation for infusing island zest and flavor into traditional dishes, Carana’s culinary team are celebrating Christmas with their signature island-inspired takes on time-honoured Christmas recipes. 

Try recreating their island-style mince pies, bursting with summer flavours, at home: 

For Sweet Pastry 
250g butter 
250g sugar 
3 eggs 
500g flour 

For Filling 
400g papaya cubed 
400g mango cubed 
50g vegetable atora 
50ml brandy 
50ml beer 
10g all-spice 

For Pastry
Cream together butter and sugar, add your eggs and mix thoroughly. Sift in flour and mix until ingredients are combined. Place in cling film and refrigerate for 1 hour. 

For Filling: 
Place all ingredients into a large bowl and mix well. Let the mixture soak for 2 to 3 hours before use. 

Line small ring moulds or a muffin tray with the pastry dough. Fill until ¾ way full. 
Add a pastry lid and prick a few holes on top. 
Bake at 180 degrees for about 25min.

Friday, 27 November 2020

Seychelles in the Spotlight

The Seychelles Islands crowned WTA’s World's Most Romantic Destination.

Revered for its mesmerising beauty, the Seychelles Islands has been awarded the World’s Most Romantic Destination for 2020 in the Grand Final of the World Travel Awards.

The pristine paradise was announced as the world-leading winner for this award following a year-long campaign and voting process on Friday, November 27, 2020.

The archipelago has long built a reputation for being one of the most romantic destinations in the world, attracting couples from all corners of the globe. Relatively untouched and religiously preserved, the islands serve as the perfect getaway for couples longing to escape the hassle of mundane life and create a deeper connection with one another.

These desires have only amplified with the current pandemic as many realise the significance of cherishing every moment. The tropical destination flaunts pearly, white beaches with turquoise waves, surrounded by lush mountains, which blend into the perfect exotic escape.

Mrs Sherin Francis, Seychelles Tourism Board Chief Executive, expressed her delight at the announcement. “Aside from the magnificent features of the destination, credit should also be given to our industry partners as they also have a hand in creating the enchantment and long-lasting memories that comes with a holiday on our shores. This award is a great honour given to Seychelles and our local industry and comes as a great encouragement during these difficult times,” said Mrs Francis.

The island nation does not just offer unspoiled natural beauty, but it also boasts numerous establishments where many couples choose to relax or tie the knot. This magnificent combination is what has hoisted the Seychelles Islands to its position as World’s Most Romantic Destination for 2020.

The World Travel Awards has been acknowledging, rewarding and celebrating excellence across all key sectors of the travel, tourism and hospitality industries since 1993.  The brand is globally recognised as the ultimate hallmark of industry excellence.

The virtual award ceremony, a milestone event in the travel and tourism industry calendar, was also attended by other major decision-makers and figureheads in the industry, in addition to leading trade and consumer media. The honourable achievement follows the destination’s win for the title of Indian Ocean’s Leading Sustainable Tourism Destination for the second consecutive year. Sustainability and romance walk hand in hand, as sustainable practices are key to preserving the romantic charm of this island paradise.

Submitted by Seychelles Tourism Board

Thursday, 26 November 2020

Tourism News

The Seychelles Islands Remains a Tourist Favourite

The mystical Seychelles Islands remain a fantasy escape for travellers across the globe and, although the vicious pandemic has dwindled travel, the destination maintains its allure. On the path to a slow yet steady recovery, the tropical paradise has seen the arrival of 98,894 visitors as of November 15, 2020.

Based on data provided by the Seychelles National Bureau of Statistics, since re-opening to commercial flights on August 1, 2020, the Seychelles International Airport has seen the arrival of 9,272 visitors.

Since then, the local tourism industry’s traditional markets have remained steadfast with the UAE as the top visiting region with 3,065 visitors, followed by Germany with 2,328, Switzerland with 1,495, the UK with 662 and France with 298.

In week 46, the airport saw 1,154 arrivals, with traditional markets remaining strong during this time hailing 628 visitors from Germany, 218 from Switzerland, 83 from the UAE, 72 from South Africa and 55 from Austria.

Additionally, since the resumption of Air Seychelles flights to South Africa, there has been an increase in the number of visitors from the region from 11 in week 45 to 72 in week 46.

Reviewing the recent tourism arrival numbers, the Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) Chief Executive, Mrs Sherin Francis stated that the current situation leaves little room for predictions of trends as travellers are now booking very close to their travel date.

“During the last quarter of 2019 alone, Seychelles received 104,079 visitors; therefore, the numbers presented this year may seem dull in comparison. However, looking at the bigger picture, these same figures are monumental for the local tourism industry. At current, our marketing approach is flexible and in constant evolution. We are doing so without deviating from the very crucial goal of keeping our people safe,” said Mrs Francis.

Mrs Francis further stated her gratitude to the local industry, international partners and the airlines who are pushing for Seychelles to remain visible and accessible during these challenging times.

Keeping abreast on client’s sentiments regarding the safety of visitors in the destination, a small-scale pilot study was conducted by STB’s Strategic Planning and Market Intelligence Team in collaboration with Hilton Northolme. The data collected comes as a beacon of hope for the local tourism industry.

With support from Hilton Northolme, the Market Intelligence Team was able to evaluate tourists’ travel motivations during the COVID-19 pandemic, assess their perception of the destination during the COVID-19 pandemic, measure the percieved level of safety and satisfaction in Seychelles during the pandemic as well as capture issues and challenges faced by travellers when travelling to Seychelles during the ‘new normal’.

The findings revealed that 100% of respondents stated that they felt safe being in Seychelles during this time, with 81% claiming to feel very safe. Furthermore, 100% of respondents claimed that they would recommend travelling to Seychelles during this time and 17% responded that they came to Seychelles to seek refuge from the pandemic.
The study is expected to be repeated with a bigger sampling.

As the pandemic sweeps across the globe and fears of travel are on the rise, Seychelles has made safety central to its recovery strategy. As the main marketing body for the islands, STB has been advocating for safe travel through a myriad of campaigns and participation in virtual summits and webinars that address the safety of travellers and tourism recovery.

“Safe tourism is not an option for Seychelles but rather a must. This is not only for the safety of our people but especially for the restart of our industry, which was, until we were hit by the pandemic, a flourishing one. Our commitments to safe tourism have been ably supported by our various partners on the tourism task force,” said the STB Chief Executive. 

Submitted by Seychelles Tourism Board

Thursday, 19 November 2020

Industry News

Seychelles seduces the World of Weddings virtual fair

The Seychelles Islands made its debut in the virtual events arena through its participation in the first 3D virtual wedding fair, The World of Weddings (TWOW) held from October 23 to October 25, 2020.

The three-day Indian wedding fair attracted close to 2,000 attendees including specifically targeted end consumers interested in luxury, lifestyle, and wedding essentials as well as travel agents, tour operators and wedding planners with the perfect clienteles.

As the Indian wedding industry undertakes a transformation unlike any other as a result of readjustments made amidst the global pandemic and with preferences leaning towards intimate and open-air ceremonies, the pristine beaches, turquoise waters, and lush surroundings of Seychelles make the perfect wedding destination.

The Seychelles Tourism Board, along with five partners, participated in TWOW with an interest of presenting the superb offerings of the destination for intimate weddings, celebrations, honeymoons, and family getaways. Participants also had the chance to interact and connect with almost 215 visitors at the booth and networking lounge.

Participating partners included DMCs, namely Creole Travel Services, Masons Travels and Summer Rain Tours and hotels which included Constance Ephelia Mahé and Avani Barbarons Seychelles Resort.

Hosted by the STB Team, the Seychelles virtual Pavillion showcased a myriad of wedding operators and service providers through this one-stop-shop platform, addressing some of the impertinent wedding woes brought about by the pandemic.

The fair united the finest players of the wedding industry, including over 300 B2B visitors such as Hight Net Worth Individual tour operators and top-notch wedding planners, to not only network but to also have one-on-one interactions with potential clientele from the comfort of their homes.

The event reached its target audience through the extensive use of social media, primarily Instagram which saw an overall reach of over 2.7 million people, over 2.5 months, interested in Indian weddings both from India and other global locations.

Seychelles has benefited from this prime opportunity to expand this thriving market segment, which has become significantly vital during a period where people have realised the importance of cherishing each moment shared with loved ones.

Speaking about the event, STB Chief Executive, Mrs Sherin Francis said “It is vital that we are able to maintain the interest on a market with potential even if it is not fully ready for travel with immediate. Note our works a lot of times is preparing the market ahead of time, staying top of mind of our visitors and partners so that eventually when the time and condition is right, the interest can easily be converted. In this instance, through this event, given the changing trend of weddings as a result of the pandemic, our Indian partners had a chance to appreciate that Seychelles as a destination check the list and has become even more ideal for weddings.”

The alluring Seychelles Islands have proven to be a dream wedding destination for lovers worldwide, offering not only some of the world’s most stunning open-air locations but also lavish hotels to host such intimate celebrations.

Welcoming travellers from all corners of the earth since its reopening in June, the island destination continuously extends its warm welcome to all those who wish to experience paradise and is especially honoured to host those who choose to start a thrilling new chapter of their lives on its shores.