The Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority (ABTA)’s newest travel marketing campaign will focus exclusively on the smaller sister of the dual-island nation, officials said Monday. The new program will utilize electronic, social and print media to promote Barbuda as an exclusive, high-end international vacation destination.
Speaking at a press briefing Monday, ABTA officials acknowledged that Barbuda, an island with 1,500 residents and a total of 73 rooms available to guests, is equipped to accommodate only a limited number of visitors.
The campaign’s messaging positions Barbuda as an “off-the-beaten track island escape,” with “one ferry, two flights and 10 taxis.” The destination lacks a major airport and is only reached via “boat, helicopter or a tiny eight-seater plane,” and travelers are welcome to visit, “But please, not all at once.”
The campaign utilizes on-location video and photography from local creator Mohammid Walbrook and U.K.-based creative agency Motel. Campaign messaging will appear in media including Condé Nast Traveler and TripAdvisor in the U.K. and North America beginning March 21.
“We have spent many years marketing Barbuda as part of the overall Antigua and Barbuda package,” said Colin James, ABTA’s CEO. “Barbuda is a special place in its own right and has an increasing number of unique things to offer.”
The campaign “Cleverly helps manage expectations because if interested travelers can’t book a flight or room, they will understand exactly why,” said Charles Fernandez, Antigua and Barbuda’s tourism minister.
“We hope this idyllic campaign truly captures the uniqueness and warmth of the local Barbudan community and is in keeping with our strategy to show the world the unsurpassed beauty of the sister island,” said Fernandez.
ABTA officials describe Barbuda’s history over the last several years as “a period of rebuilding” following widespread devastation the island suffered in 2017 from Hurricane Irma.
Previously popular restaurants including Uncle Roddy’s Beach Bar and Grill has reopened, said officials, while the Barbuda Ocean Club luxury resort is “nearing completion.” A Nobu restaurant currently operates on Princess Diana Beach and the Barbuda Belle “eco-hotel” is also located on the island.