SUN' n FUN and The Islands of The Bahamas Growing Partnership

The Ministry of Tourism & Aviation recently embarked on partnership negotiations with Florida based company SUN 'n FUN — host of SUN ‘n FUN International Fly-in & Expo, the largest convention in Florida and the second largest aviation show in the world. 

It is estimated that more than 300,000 persons from over 60 nations, inclusive of 500 manufacturers and exhibitors, pilots, campers and aviation enthusiasts, attend the six-day event, which features daily aerobatic air shows, and more than 10,000 aircraft movements during the event. 



As private aviation is extremely important for The Islands Of The Bahamas, particularly the Family Islands and Grand Bahama Island where airlift is not as consistent, the Aviation Unit within the Bahamas Tourist Office, Florida has exhibited at SUN 'n' FUN for many years. 

With a view to expanding private aviation business to The Bahamas, Director for Private Aviation, Greg Rolle, Ministry of Tourism & Aviation (MOTA,) accompanied SUN ’n FUN’s Chairman, President, and two of the organization’s top executives on a private pilots' Fly-In to several of islands of The Bahamas, including Grand Bahama Island, to officially endorse the proposition of the SUN ’n FUN/Bahamas partnership. 



Given Grand Bahama’s state- of- the- art Fixed Based Operator (FBO), and the imminent reopening of the West End Airport, the island should attract a considerable amount of private aviation business from key Florida markets. 

After much planning and consideration, Bahamas Tourism Officials and executives of SUN ‘n FUN have determined that the goal of their collaborative effort is to create a special marketing initiative which will reach thousands of private pilots in the SUN ' n FUN database to inspire future travel to The Bahamas. 

Ellison "Tommy" Thompson, Deputy Director General, MOTA, said, "The idea that we're proposing is to work with SUN ' n FUN to create a Bahamas website to show general aviators how easy it is to fly to The Islands Of The Bahamas, especially from Florida." 

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"We see a great opportunity to increase business to The Islands Of The Bahamas with general aviation... [and we are looking] to see how we can better make it easier for general aviation to The Islands Of The Bahamas, " said Thompson. 

As Florida is the number one source market for Bahamas tourism, the partnership is very important in bringing more business to the Family Islands and more specifically to Grand Bahama Island. 

Lites Leenhouts, President, SUN ' n FUN, said, "Our charter is to motivate the general aviation community to fly and we think of The Islands Of The Bahamas as an extension of the Florida opportunities to fly in great places." 

He added that, "To get this done it takes persistent, consistent, good flow of information, so that's why we're teaming with the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation and Grand Bahama to ensure that we get the facts right to teach the general aviation community how easy it is to navigate through the skies...with minimal effort." 

Ultimately, this SUN ’n FUN/Bahamas marketing partnership will help to showcase and create greater awareness of the diverse destinations within The Bahamas and travel experiences available throughout Florida to the private pilot market. 

Moreover, it is expected that the volume of tourism will increase from Florida to The Islands Of The Bahamas as a result of the marketing plan expected to be further outlined in October.