Of all the attractions Caribbean people often utilize with a great degree of regularity, the value of Sports Tourism seemed to have caught their interest more than anything else. Today’s definition of tourism has spread itself throughout the Caribbean in a manner which leads to entertainment through sports. Already neighbouring islands have created some wonderful events sporting to bring together fans from everywhere.

Sports Toursim brings value to Caribbean

Those who wish to go in search of various forms of sporting events will choose countries who plan their vacation packages carefully. This practice is not a secret in other parts of the world, whose professional approach to attract visitors, have expanded into huge commercial business investment. In the Caribbean, there have always been regular attractions to various islands of the region, with special facilities to bring sports, entertainment and in many cases, the excellent weather and beaches.

Certain countries in the Caribbean such as Barbados, St. Lucia, Grenada, Trinidad and Tobago, Antigua and St. Vincent and the Grenadines, have all attempted to follow the first world countries in this regard. Unfortunately, the growth of turning Sports tourism into a lucrative industry has not yet been attracting fans to the extent as they would like. Tourism in every form has now become a commercial entity and preparation is marketed to facilitate multiple packages. This exercise calls for careful planning which will bring together various attractive events which will be invitations to the world of Tourism as a whole.

Sports Tourism

Unfortunately, the desire to attract the sports lovers to witness international sporting competitions such as international Cricket, Track, Cycling, swimming and soccer, have not yet carved specific enjoyment. Major sporting associations must communicate with their official Tourist board office before confirming dates for sporting activities. The dates of all the organized sporting international events are usually confirmed well in advance, a factor which allows the Board of Tourism to either bring closure to the dates listed and in some cases, many places of interest can join their calendar of events at a date which can attract visitors to enjoy the numerous forms of entertainment.

Sports Tourism

In recent years, some countries have invested huge sums of money to erect sporting venues which can accommodate national, regional and international competition. As such some of the finest athletes in the world will be invited to participate in sporting events of their choice, for example, cycling, swimming, gymnastics, track and field etc. This trend of thinking would engage many more citizens into sports, whereby encouraging their children to develop a love and appreciation for a sporting discipline.

Despite having some level of success in sports tourism in the Caribbean, it is my sincere belief that much more can be done. We need to put heads together and work towards organized and longterm planning. This can be done in ways, the people of the country will enjoy as well as make friends in the process. There will also be an increase in the economy and most of all, the number of fans who will show appreciation of excellent performances in various sporting disciplines.

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Honorary Dr.Alvin Corneal HBM. Alvin is one of a handful of sportsmen who represented our national Football (Soccer) and Cricket teams concurrently between 1955 and 1971. He was also a member of the first-ever West Indies Football team which toured England in 1959. He played both sports professionally as a player and a coach to all levels of National Football teams. He had previously held positions as National football Coach of junior and senior teams, Technical Director of the TTFA, Technical Director of Concacaf, and the prestigious positions as FIFA Technical Committee Member and currently, a FIFA Technical Advisor. He is also a presenter/ analyst for Radio and television on all local, regional and International Sports. He is the recipient of a national Award from his country, Trinidad and Tobago for his outstanding service to the people of the region in Sport and ideal Character personality. He was also chosen to receive the Country’s Republic day award for the year 2011. He has been inducted into the Country’s Hall of Fame.