26 Jan 2010

American Samoa considers new tourism plan

2:40 pm on 26 January 2010

A draft master plan for tourism in American Samoa is being presented to key stakeholders in Pago Pago this week.

Resort Consulting Associates are being funded by the US government to draw up a long-term plan to boost tourism.

An RCA consultant, Cate Thero, says the draft plan includes various improvements to marketing, recommendations on policy changes, and various funding opportunities for tourism proposals.

She says the territory has untapped potential and they've taken on board people's views from a visit last year.

"There's a couple of next steps involved here, is for the plan to be adopted by the local people, and for the people to believe it's a good plan and that they buy into it. There's elements of improving the funding for the American Samoa Visitors Bureau, increasing that to a level where it can actually have an effective global presence, as well as putting in place some of these steps where we actually work on the website and we work on what we're offering. Like one of the initial issues is that there's so many wonderful things here. No one knows about it and they haven't been packaged up or there's not collateral or information or websites to promote it."

Cate Thero says the American Samoa Visitors Bureau will be responsible for implementing the plan.