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It is that time of year when travel publications and TV news casts announce their eagerly awaited “Places to Go 2018” lists for American travelers to see where is the next hot spot to explore. Malta is clearly trending. Although Malta has already been featured on major travel lists in the past few years, this year the Mediterranean Gem has made more than 20 lists including several leading TV Broadcasts. Malta is not only mentioned but being singled out by top media outlets and TV broadcasts. From CBS News Travel Editor Peter Greenberg to Conde Nast Traveler editor Mark Ellwood on Megyn Kelly Today, Malta has been named as one of their top picks!
According to Michelle Buttigieg, Malta Tourism Authority (MTA) Representative in North America, “Malta has already been featured in the past few years on prominent “Places to Go” lists such as the New York Times and National Geographic Traveler. However, this year, we were truly overwhelmed.” She added, “part of this growing interest can be attributed to MTA’s promotion of Valletta 2018. However, it is really due more to MTA’s successful promotional campaigns targeting niche markets that reflect the diversity of Malta and Gozo’s tourism product.” MTA has also garnered major publicity in the US and Canada because it is proactive in working with prominent journalists and social media influencers.
The tourism arrivals numbers from the US market reflect this promotion, having shown an increase of 37.7 % over the period of January to November 2017!
The Grand Harbour, Valletta/photo courtesy of viewingmalta.com
Buttigieg also attributes some of this growth to Malta being accepted in to Virtuoso, the largest consortium of luxury travel agents two years ago, and Malta’s proactive membership in the United States Tour Operators Association (USTOA), which has resulted in an increased number of tour operator programs adding Malta to their itineraries.
Highlights of these Places to Go 2018 lists include CBS TV, NBC TV, CNN.com, Associated Press (whose story went viral); prominent luxury titles as the Robb Report, Conde Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure Architectural digest and prestigious titles as Frommers, Fodors, Lonely Planet and Men’s Journal.
Paul Bugeja, MTA CEO, stated that “MTA is very pleased to see that the marketing strategy, investment and efforts we are making in the North American market are clearly making a major impact on Malta’s overall tourism picture.”
The Blue Lagoon/photo courtesy of viewingmalta.com