LATA chooses its champions

by Steve Hartridge

Norwegian Airlines, Guyana Tourism Authority, PromPeru and Quito Tourism were among the winners at The Latin American Travel Association’s (LATA) Achievement Awards this week.

This year in its ninth edition, the awards recognise destinations, individuals and/or companies that have made exceptional contributions to the development of travel to Latin America, and reward ‘initiatives and efforts made by the tourism industry to bring the region closer to the UK’.

Norwegian landed the Airline of the Year gong for ‘bringing Latin America closer to the UK’ and for facilitating travel within the region with the launch of a direct route from London to Buenos Aires and the introduction of a local carrier in Argentina serving six destinations.

The Guyana Tourism Authority picked up the Sustainable Destination of the Year title for its approach to sustainable tourism and for launching a community-led framework and toolkit aimed at helping indigenous communities to access the benefits of tourism.

PromPeru was Destination of the Year for driving tourism to the destination by positioning Peru as a leader in gastronomy and for its work with the UK media to promote the destination to the trade and attending consumer events to reach potential visitors.

And Quito Tourism won Marketing Campaign of the Year for its multifaceted marketing campaign designed to reach travellers throughout the different phases of their trip: before, during and after. Judges were impressed with the multi-platform campaign that has been launched on the tourist board’s website, mobile apps and social media networks.

Other winners included Golden Galapagos Cruises (Cruise Operator of the Year), andBeyond Vira Vira (Hotel of the Year) and Latin Routes (Tour Operator of the Year).

The winners were selected by a judging panel composed of Derek Moore; chairman of the Association of Independent Tour Operators (AITO), Barbara Kolosinska; managing director of C&M Recruitment, Aneil Bedi; founder of Brand Agents, Quinn Meyer; founder of Crees Manu and LATA committee member, and Danny Callaghan; general manager of LATA.

Colin Stewart, Chairman of LATA, said: “The aim of the LATA Achievement Awards is to celebrate and recognise destinations, individuals and companies that have made outstanding contributions to developing tourism to Latin America from the UK. The level of submissions was extremely high, and we were delighted to see the efforts being made within the industry to grow and develop sustainable tourism to the region.”

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