The National Tour Association (NTA) has launched a Latino initiative focusing on stimulating packaged travel business with North American Hispanic-owned travel businesses. The association will develop strategies for attracting Hispanic customers and promoting tours to and from Latin markets, according to Lisa Simon, NTA president, who announced the initiative during last weeks NTA Convention in Montreal.
Simon kicked off the initiative with a seminar describing the Hispanic market, its growth in both numbers and buying power, and the accompanying growth in travel between North America and Latin America. NTA Chairman Cathy Greteman appointed a new group, called the Latino Task Force, which will make recommendations in 2011 for marketing to this growing market segment.
During the seminar panelists reported that the purchasing power of the U.S. Hispanic market is projected to be $1.4 trillion by 2012. Also, with the finalization of the U.S. Census, the Hispanic population is expected to be 20 percent of the total U.S. population.
Speakers during the seminar were Olga Ramudo, who will chair the NTA Latino Task Force. She is the owner of Express Travel in Miami and an NTA tour operator. Other speakers included Maria Gross, former Latin America director for the Palm Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau, who is assisting NTA in Latin market, and Jorge Cazenave of Cazenave Tours of Buenos Aires, a member of the NTA Board of Directors.
“We look forward to playing a leadership role in this segment of the travel industry,” said Simon. “As the Hispanic market and tourism between North America and Latin America gain strength, they present phenomenal opportunities.”