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July 17 2024 / 01:28 PM
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Tahiti Tourisme
The new hot pot for the Canadian travellers

Left to Right: Gina Bunton - Director of International Operations, Zara Turner - Senior Account Executive at Zeno Group, Veronica Petcoff - Senior Account Director at Zeno group, Account Lead (Trade) Tahiti Tourisme Canada, Jean-Marc Mocellin - CEO Tahiti Tourisme

 

Tahiti is ready to welcome Canadians with open arms as they appoint Zeno Group as the Canadian Agency of Record.

Zeno Group has been representing Tahiti Tourisme since only January 2024, and they’ve already launched multiple successful digital campaigns within Canada for Tahiti Tourisme and alongside Air Tahiti Nui. Further to that, they’e conducted their first in-market presence with a mission to educate tour operators, travel advisors and trade media on all things Tahiti.

Veronica Petcoff, Account Lead, Tahiti Tourisme Canada says: The Islands of Tahiti are becoming more visible to Canadian Advisors - but not in a mass market way. We’re finding the right advisors who have the desire and clientele to sell Tahiti, who like to plan more complex trips. Tahiti is not necessarily all about luxury but it’s about feeling exclusive, and I think Canadians will resonate with that. ‘No mass tourism’ destinations are the new luxury. You want to be able to say that you’ve been to a truly secluded beach that you were surrounded by locals vs other tourists and that’s the culture you’ll find in Tahiti”

Veronica encourages all travel advisors to check out and register for Tahiti’s Specialist Program to learn more about the destination as it provides plenty of general information to kick-start your desire to sell the destination. “It’s the most beautiful training I’ve ever done! It really inspired me to not only visit, but to talk more about the destination.” – says Veronica. Read more about the program and it’s benefits below.

Travellers to The Islands of Tahiti have the chance to discover a multitude of islands with each visit to the destination. Each island boasts a unique array of attractions, including diverse landscapes, rich cultures, traditional practices, and unique accommodations. This destination provides a comprehensive experience, offering unforgettable diving opportunities, authentic culinary delights, and thrilling nautical excursions. It is a place where visitors can immerse themselves in the local community and truly become part of the island experience.

For those who haven’t heard of the destination, buckle up as we take you on a journey to explore the 118 islands of Tahiti. Yes, you read it right. Tahiti consists of 5 archipelagos and 118 islands and atolls with quite different landscapes:

  1. Atolls Coral Islands – Tuamotu Archipelago
  2. High Islands with Lagoon – Society Archipelago
  3. High Islands with Lagoon – Gambier
  4. High Islands with Lagoon: Austral
  5. High Islands Lagoon: Marquesas

 

Tahiti's-Hidden-Gems-Boutique-Charm-Across-118-Islands-and-Atolls-2.jpg

 

Airlines & Flights:

There are several easy ways to get to Tahiti, with major airlines offering direct service via Seattle, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. Here is an overview of the flight schedule:

From CDG-LAX

  • Air Tahiti Nui & American Airlines – daily flights
  • Air France - 5 flights per week
  • Delta Air Lines – 3 flights per week

From SFO

  • French Bee – 3 flights per week
  • United Airlines – 5 flights per week

From SEA

  • 2 flights per week

The Islands of Tahiti are spread over an area as big as Europe. All islands cover an area of over 4 million km2 in the Pacific. There are a few ways for you to connect to the islands internally: domestic airlines, ferries, and yacht charters.

 

Domestic Airline Services:

  • 2 domestic airlines: Air Tahiti and Air Moana
  • 2 small charter flights: Air Archipels and Tahiti Nui

 

Ferry Services:

Companies include Aremiti, Terevau (Tahiti – Moorea, daily rotations/week), Apetahi Express (Tahiti – Huahine, Raiatea, Taha, Bora Bora, 2 to 3 rotations/week), and Vaeara'I (Tahiti – Huahine, Raiatea, Taha, Bora Bora, 2 to 3 rotations/week).

Tahiti is one of the destinations you can visit over and over since every island has something different to offer (and keep in mind that we are talking about 118 islands and atolls!).

 

Destination Facts:

  • The official name is French Polynesia
  • It is a French overseas country with its own government
  • Its official languages: French and Tahitian
  • Papeete is the capital and is located on the main island of Tahiti
  • Faa airport is 8 hours from Los Angeles and San Francisco
  • The average temperature varies between 23 to 31ºC
  • Fresh (winter) season from May to October
  • Summer from November to April
  • The local currency is the Pacific Franc (XPF or CFP): $1.00 USD = approximately 110 XPF
  • Tipping is not expected

 

Activities:

There is a great variety of experiences within the Islands of Tahiti. The destination offers: 

  1. Cultural Tours
  2. Nautical activities
  3. Underwater activities
  4. Land activities
  5. Aerial activities and much more!

For more details on various activities available, please visit tahititourisme.ca.

 

Accommodations:

The Islands of Tahiti offer different accommodation options to cater to every type of traveller. The variety ranges from 5-star resorts with dreamy overwater bungalows to Tahitian guesthouses, where you will fully immerse yourself in Tahitian culture as you stay with local families. You can even rent a catamaran for a day or two to explore at your own leisure.

 

 

For those seeking more exclusive lodging, Tahiti also offers many private villas.

Hotel openings in 2024 (237 additional rooms):

  1. Westin Bora Bora - 142 rooms 
  2. Maitai Tahiti - 63 rooms
  3. Tikehau Pearl – 37 rooms
  4. Niu Moorea – 16 rooms

Hotel openings for 2025 (285 additional rooms):

  1. Kauhani Inn Tahiti – 43 rooms
  2. Tahiti Lagoon (Sofitel) - 149 rooms
  3. Punui Tahiti Iti 56 – rooms

Accommodations Development Master Plan:

Because Tahiti is short on accommodations and there was high demand for tourism last year, Tahiti, in partnership with the government, has put together a master plan to increase tourism accommodation development. The destination is trying to anticipate what kind of accommodations are needed on each island and try to match the needs of the market. The first results will be available before the end of this year.

 

Tahiti's-Hidden-Gems-Boutique-Charm-Across-118-Islands-and-Atolls-MOOREA-©-TAHITI-HOMES-Ltd.jpg

Photo credit: TAHITI HOMES Ltd

 

What’s Ahead for The Islands of Tahiti:

Surf Contest 2024 Paris Olympics in Teahupo’o. July 27 – August 5, 2024. The contest will take place at the birthplace of surfing – Tahiti!

The Cruise Terminal to open in August. Tahiti is one of the destinations which is ideal for cruising as you can explore many of The Islands of Tahiti. This new terminal will meet all the cruising needs. 

 

Cruises:

Tahiti features three prominent cruise lines: Paul Gaugin, Starbreeze, and the Aranui 5.

Additionally, numerous other cruise lines, such as Norwegian Spirit, Seabourn, and Viking, visit the destination. The total number of cruise passengers who explored The Islands of Tahiti was 39,704 in 2023 and 44,679 in 2024.

Tahiti's-Hidden-Gems-Boutique-Charm-Across-118-Islands-and-Atolls-3.jpg Tahiti's-Hidden-Gems-Boutique-Charm-Across-118-Islands-and-Atolls-4.jpg

 

Destination in Numbers:

  • 2023 was a record year for Tahiti tourism with over 260 000 visitors. It is a 20% increase from 2022.
  • The great majority of tourists are from North America with 43% from the USA and Canada with 9,000 visitors which is about 3%.
  • Throughout the year, the hotel occupancy is 73.2%. Between November and March, there is more availability to match the Canadian travel season.
  • Average length of stay is 14 nights for Canadians
  • 20% of travellers are returning within 5 years. Travellers who are staying for a week or less tend to come back and book longer stays. 

 

Chart of islands visited by Canadians:

Tahiti's-Hidden-Gems-Boutique-Charm-Across-118-Islands-and-Atolls-5.jpg

Source ISPF

 

The number of Canadian travellers has grown since the start of the year. Here are the top online search origins: Montreal leads with 138,490 searches in the past 12 months, followed by Vancouver with 95,012, Toronto with 77,382, Calgary with 27,713, Edmonton with 15,720, and Quebec with 11,528.

 

Current Promotional Campaigns:

The Islands of Tahiti have two campaigns for Canadian travellers:

  1. First, a digital campaign partnership with Air Tahiti Nui aims to promote Los Angeles flights and the new Seattle route to Papeete, offering diverse flight options for Canadians. Launched in late May and running until the end of June, this initiative has already generated over 250 bookings. 
  2. Next, a Canadian paid media flight on Feel What We Feel has successfully reached over 1.3 million Canadians since its launch. This has resulted in a 75% increase in new visitors to the Tahiti website.

 

Tahiti's-Hidden-Gems-Boutique-Charm-Across-118-Islands-and-Atolls-MOOREA©-Grégoire-Le-Bacon.jpg

Photo Credit: Grégoire Le Bacon

 

Other segment campaigns include:

  1. Tahitian Guesthouses
  2. Scuba Diving
  3. Nautical Charter
  4. Vacation Rentals
  5. LGBTQ+

 

Tahiti Specialist Program:

Tahiti Specialist Program is a multi-level learning platform designed to help Travel Advisors enhance their knowledge of the destinations starting with the general overview, geography and locations of the various islands. This program provides deeper insights into the diversity of all 118 islands and atolls.

As you progress through your e-learning, destination experience, and passengers booked your level will increase. Levels 2 and 3 offer additional benefits, such as access to an online booking platform where tour operators and Tahiti Specialists can showcase their unique vacation packages directly to consumers. 

Furthermore, upon completion of the course, Travel Agents can be easily geolocated by consumers who are looking for a Tahiti specialist in their area and they will be connected directly to the agent.

Sign up today!

 

Upcoming Canadian Agent FAM:

There are rumours about a FAM coming up before the end of 2024 and to qualify, you need to be a Tahiti Specialist! So, get your e-leaning in now and stay tuned for more information!

The Specialist Program has been revamped so if you registered over 10 years ago, you would have to create a new account and refresh your learning modules. Be sure to add all information on the trips you have sold or if you visited Tahiti yourself!

If you have any questions regarding the program, please email the Agent Specialist directly.

 

Sustainability:

In 2022, Tahiti initiated the Fari’ira’a Manihini 2027 project in collaboration with the local population, professionals, and the Government. This project aims to safeguard natural resources, enhance the well-being of the residents, and uphold exceptional visitor experiences. The Islands of Tahiti was honoured with the Sustainable and Inclusive Destination Award in January, underscoring the commitment to prioritize the community's welfare and ensure their active involvement in all tourism initiatives and decision-making processes.

The destination will share the action plan later this year.

 

Tahiti's-Hidden-Gems-Boutique-Charm-Across-118-Islands-and-Atolls-TIKEHAU-©-Grégoire-Le-Bacon.jpg

Photo credit: Grégoire Le Bacon

 

By Kateryna Ivchenko

Jun 19, 2024

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