Chukka Caribbean Adventures Gets Agent Friendly

Chukka Caribbean Adventures on March 15 will launch a new online booking engine, in which agents can book adventures in any of Chukka's locations and receive the standard 10 percent commission. A Chukka client soars along a zipline

Chukka held an event in New York City, which Travel Agent attended, to address media and announce the company's future plans to add two new destinations for Chukka Adventures by 2007, although further details were not disclosed. Also, Chukka officials said that their long-term goal is to get a total of four additional locations in the next three years.

Chukka's new online engine, available at, is yet another step that the nearly 20-year-old company has taken recently to become more agent-friendly. Chukka just started offering commissions to agents in the last few years, and prior to January, only booked primarily with hotels.

Now, the company has developed several partnerships with operators such as Travelocity,, Travel Impressions, and Unique Expressions.

At the event, Dominique Peterkin, marketing manager, and Marc Melville, co-managing director of the company, told attendees Chukka is eyeing two more locations to add to Chukka's already impressive list of destinations that includes Jamaica, Belize and the Bahamas. Melville says the company's larger goal is to add a total of four destinations in the next three years.

As far as tour offerings go, Chukka announced the launch of the Twilight Canopy Adventure, the first tour to be designated as one of the Polo Collection, a new line of nature adventure tours.

Chukka Caribbean Adventures canopy tour

There are a total of 10 tours in development for Jamaica, including a Polo Collection adventure to the undiscovered south coast at YS Falls.

"The Polo Collection was conceived in the same adventurous spirit—and love of polo—that launched the Chukka business," Melville said in a news release. "Taking polo ponies for therapeutic swims after matches proved to be just as enjoyable for the riders, and eventually friends were requesting to just ride and swim, and Chukka founder Danny Melville recognized an opportunity to transform a passion into a business. We are constantly exploring and looking for the next adventure that will excite us and make us want to share it. In the case of the Polo Collection, the unique experiences of our own line of tours in Jamaica led us to that eureka moment, at the same time helping us fulfill a need from our hotel partners for new and more exclusive expeditions for their clientele."

Polo Collection guests will also receive a signature backpack stocked with rejuvenating items like water and snacks, as well as a special gift from Chukka Caribbean Adventures specific to each of the new tours.

The Polo Collection Twilight Canopy Adventure puts guests in the heart of the Jamaican rainforest. Guests are transported to the Chukka Jungle Outpost where Certified Canopy Specialists assist in outfitting each person in a harness that will suspend them 250 feet above the jungle floor as darkness falls. Connected to the first traverse with just a small headlamp for illumination, one by one adventurers step off the high platforms into the awaiting darkness to fly through the canopy with a hidden audience of jungle creatures. A total of five leaps lead deeper into the forest until the final 1,000-foot traverse sends guests flying at speeds of 18 miles per hour through the night. Per person rates are $200 for the Twilight Canopy Adventure. For reservations contact your travel provider or hotel desk, book online at or call Chukka Caribbean Adventures at 876-979-6599.

Chukka's Jamaica Dogsled Experience

The second tour in the Polo Collection category is High Tea Horseback, a variation on Chukka's signature tour. Clients will saddle up for a ride that takes them through a tropical forest, into the Jamaican countryside, then up a cliffside for a panoramic view of the Jamaican coastline. Back at Chukka Blue, they'll be served High Tea with white glove service in a grassy meadow, followed by a jaunt to the warm surf of the Caribbean Sea on horseback.

Chukka also announced the April 13 launch of the Jamaica Dogsled Experience, a fun, hands-on experience for dog lovers. This tour will also be part of the Polo Collection. The Jamaica Dogsled Experience will be a very limited tour, offered only twice a day with a maximum of two people per tour. The tour is priced at $100 per person, and a portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Jamaican Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (JSPCA).

The Jamaica Dogsled Tour sprang from the creation of the Jamaica Doglsed Team, the brainchild of Danny Melville, founder and chairman of Chukka Caribbean Adventures. In 2005, he hatched the idea of a Jamaica Doglsed Team, hoping to tap into some of the whimsy of the Olympic Bobsled Team, made famous by the film Cool Runnings. With sponsorship from Jimmy Buffett and Margaritaville, the team was born: six dogs rescued from the JSPCA and an animal-loving Jamaican named Devon Anderson, who became Jamaica's first musher.

Chukka also continues to offer some of its mainstays, such as its Horseback Ride 'N Swim, which Travel Agent experienced first-hand during a trip to Montego Bay, Jamaica.

Founded in 1983, Chukka Caribbean Adventures offers 32 tours in Jamaica, Belize, the Bahamas and Turks & Caicos Islands. Collectively, the operations delivered more than 250,000 adventure tours to cruise and hotel guests in 2006.