U.S. tourists driving job creation

As summer heats up, the hospitality and tourism industry continues to have a positive outlook for 2017. At its annual conference, The Caribbean Tourism Organization reported that in the first quarter, it saw a 1.8 percent increase in the number of visits to the Bahamas compared to the year previously. That translates to 8.7 million visitors from around the world. 

U.S. tourists have driven much of this traffic in the Caribbean - especially in Cuba. U.S. citizens were able, as of 2016, to travel directly to Cuba for specific purposes, including educational travel.

According to the Cuba Business Report, 4 million tourists came from the U.S. in 2016, contributing over $3 billion to the local economy. To handle the demand, the Ministry of Tourism committed to building more lodgings, ultimately increasing the demand for jobs in construction and hospitality. It anticipates that the work will carry the country to 2030.

In addition, lodging companies like AirBnB have turned their focus to Cuba as a growing business opportunity.

The Ministry projects that over 4 million visitors will come visit Cuba in the coming year.

Interest in Cuba has led to a spike in tourism for 2016 and 2017.