Piper calls for excellent service in tourism

Participants at Tuesday's function
Participants at Tuesday’s function

Director of Tourism, Colin Piper, has urged vendors and tour guides to always strive to provide excellent service in the fragile tourism industry.

“As we all know the tourism industry is very fragile and since we are selling an experience we need to be on top of our game,” Piper said.

He was speaking at a function on Tuesday during which 80 vendors and tour guides were awarded participation certificates for completing a series of refresher courses which were hosted by the Discover Dominica Authority (DDA).

“Recent events in the cruise industries remind us of the fragile nature of the tourism industry and this has underscored the need for all tourism service providers to be thoroughly refreshed in the key components of the tourism product and the delivery of good quality service to all visitors,” Piper said.

He pointed out that Dominica needs to embark on a quality initiative since the island is unable to compete with other markets.

Meanwhile Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Tourism, Claudia Bellot, told the participants that the success of their business depends on meeting and surpassing expectations of clients. “The success of your business depends on how well you are able to please your clients and to meet and surpass their expectations,” she pointed out.

She urged tour guides to always stay abreast of information about Dominica in order to provide the best service.

According to her, service providers have to work very hard to ensure that proper standards are maintained.

Mrs. Bellot noted that service providers should always improve and refresh their business and forge relationships with other local craft persons and others who create products which may be attractive to visitors.

The courses sought to refresh service providers in key components of the tourism product and the delivery of quality service. Session topics included communication skills, customer satisfaction and current issues in tourism.

The courses were held in collaboration with the Dominica State College.

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12 Comments

  1. Frank Talker
    February 27, 2013

    I left this out of my previous submission, so here goes:
    Capacity building in tourism operators should best be handled by the DHTA and not DDA. Industry standards should be set by the DHTA in a manner which also fulfills the requirements set by DDA, legislation and Gov’t policies. The DHTA, being the association of tourism and hotel owners and operators, should set its standards and should be the only industry body to police its own standards. Only the DHTA has the relevance, inherent interest, industry interest, mandate and market presence to pursue standards which only it can set and uphold. The DDA should find other ways to justify its existence and pursue the policies establish by the State.

  2. Frank Talker
    February 27, 2013

    I find Piper to be more talk than anything else. At the level of CEO of DDA, I would believe that He should be engaging the public and stakeholders on policy ans strategic issues and not the PR role he often plays in the media. This PR function should be handled by a lower executive thus allowing Piper to build a role for himself in engaging the public and stakeholders with substance.

  3. Anonymous
    February 27, 2013

    What the people must understand is that Tourism is as important an Industry as Agriculture is you consider yourself a “Nature Isle”. The other option is to go into heavy poluting industries which will destroy what you claim you stand for. Agriculture feeds a nation and other nations. Tourism helps to create jobs. When Tourists visit hotel rooms are filled, restaurants get business, vendors get business, taxi drivers get business and the whole community gains from 1 Tourist. The emphasis should be on keep Dominica clean and maintaining a good attitude towards visitors that have a vested interest in Dominica. Guess what? because of there great experience, they will come again. Bye the way, Mr. Piper and Mr. Douglas, you need to ensure that your Officials at Airports that are the first ones that greets visitors are aware that everyone that comes in is not a criminal. 99% of visitors are great law abiding people. A smile and welcome goes a long way.

  4. Anonymous
    February 27, 2013

    Its very simply -focus on the customer not on who is walking by or who is sending you a message . Don’t shout or suck or teeth when a customer complains. And most important don’t rip them off -they wont come back.

  5. Richard
    February 27, 2013

    He want eexcellent service..how about servicing the view of the bayfront..when I pull into port on a cruise..the last thing I want to see is partially nude..smelly homless beggars trying to hustle me for money, it really gives off a bad impression..and Dominica has the most boldface beggers I have ever met..I came to Dominica for carnival and echo tourism..ppl in Dominica don’t realize the goldmine their island is..ppl will travel thousands of miles to get their just to enjoy the natural beauty..they will..i did..i spent plenty money and didn’t blink an eye. the first thing to fix…the airport.

  6. river
    February 26, 2013

    piper again before u give advice and lecture to vendors give it to your staff members so they Know how to behave themselves when they travel

  7. non resident
    February 26, 2013

    maybe tourists experience starts from removing all those dirty tents and garbage from Bay Front as well as cleaning city centre…? Good standards start not from conceptual CRM doctrines but from normal hygien…

  8. power
    February 26, 2013

    I think too much emphasis is put on this industry at the expence of good old agriculture which we depended upon for centuries It is funny that Ian Douglas is minister of tourism because some years ago after a storm R B D who was his grand father told a few young men including myself that we should not be descouraged because agriculture is the only way forward as we will never be making bicycles. Only one thing he did not mention ”begging”

    • dreamer
      February 26, 2013

      But why oppose tourism and agriculture ? There is room for both in DOminica . Agriculture is essential to Dominica’s people food supply and could / should be a major contributor through exports.

      Tourism is essential to DOminica’s growth in terms of jobs and foreign exchange balance .

      Dominica’s youth does not seem very interested in agriculture although there is a huge potential there.

      • Anonymous
        February 26, 2013

        It’s also important to note that when tourist visit our country they need to eat and drink. That’s where the merger comes into play. The higher our stay-over visitors the more food our farmers should be supplying to local hotels and restaurant and when I say food I also mean fish, eggs, chicken, fruits to eat and make local fresh drinks.

  9. NY NY
    February 26, 2013

    If your Structure as a Nation isn’t of a High or Higher in Standards it’s extremely Difficult to Raise that mindset level to understand Protocol.

    Sadly Dominica is not a above board island in Terms Of it’s overall set up, so it can’t trickle Down to The Society.

    That’s why the Tourism Product is Struggling to Stay afloat in Dominica—–STANDARDS IN SOCIETY!

  10. Pedro
    February 26, 2013

    Quality service is a very important thing to aspire to and practice, not just to serve visitors but everyone. Along those lines how much is it going to take out of government to replace those unsightly poor quality vending stalls with proper quality ones that can be donated or leased to those selling on the bayfront and elsewhere? Vendors and tourists deserve better. So does the good name of Dominica.

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