Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, June 12, 2019 – The Ministry of Tourism of the Dominican Republic expressed today its sincerest condolences to the families and friends of those affected in the tragic events that have been reported over the last few weeks in the country, adding that it is working closely with the appropriate authorities to solve these cases as quickly as possible.
“All visitors are very important to us,” Minister of Tourism Francisco Javier García said. “The Ministry’s most important responsibilities are to ensure that the highest industry standards are met so that all tourists are safe when visiting. At the same time, it must also work to provide a definitive answer to the afflicted families.
The Dominican Republic has served as model for other destinations in terms of operations and industry standards. This can be seen in the following statistics reported by the Central Bank of the Dominican Republic:
- In 2018, 6.6 million tourists visited the Dominican Republic, of which 3.2 million came from the United States and Canada.
- Almost 30 million tourists have visited the Dominican Republic in the last five years.
- According to a poll carried out in 2018 by the same institution:
- 99% of the tourists from the United States said they would return to our country on vacation and 94% evaluated our tourism services as excellent.
- 94% of the tourists from Canada said they would return to our country and 97% evaluated our tourism services as excellent.
- In 2017, the rate of tourist incidents was 1.6 per 100,000 visitors. In 2018, that rate dropped to 1.4 per 100,000 visitors.
These statistics are widely recognized by international tourism experts. In an interview on June 10th, CBS News Travel Editor Peter Greenberg said that “when you look at the sheer number of people that are vacationing there and then you look at the number of incidents, the numbers are overwhelmingly in your favor, but that shouldn’t prevent you from asking some basic common-sense questions.” In other words, it is important for tourists to take precautions when they travel to any destination in the world.
Along the same lines, Mark Murphy, CEO of travAlliancemedia, explained in a recent interview that “the FBI and CDC are on the ground. That’s the way that this is going to get resolved for Americans who have doubts. This is a destination that has welcomed eight million Americans over the last four years. How many times have we heard about problems?”
The United States Embassy in Santo Domingo highlighted today that they are “actively working in collaboration with Dominican authorities and the private sector to ensure that all US citizens are and feel safe while in the country.” The Embassy also confirmed that the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) is conducting a deeper toxicology analysis and “results might take up to 30 days”, asking for patience during this process.
The National Police Department, in collaboration with the Ministry, National Hotel Association (ASONAHORES) and the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) is following the due process and working diligently to complete the investigations and to keep the public informed as new findings arise.
The Ministry is also working with ASONAHORES to reinforce safety conditions and quality control in food, beverages and any other element that has a positive impact on the satisfaction of those who visit our county as tourists.
While what happened is tragic and regrettable, García said it is important for everyone who wishes to disseminate information about the situation to do it in context and with perspective. It is advisable to wait for the official reports before speculating on the causes of death.
“We are confident that we can provide a definitive answer as soon as possible,” said García. “You can also be sure that the necessary measures will be taken to make the country even safer for all visitors.”
About Dominican Republic
Surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean on the north and the Caribbean Sea on the south, our lush tropical and paradisiacal country boasts nearly 1,000 miles of coastline, magnificent resorts and hotels, and a variety of sports, recreation and entertainment options. Here you can dance to the pulse pounding thrill of the merengue, renew in our luxurious and diverse accommodations, explore ancient relics of centuries past, delight in delicious Dominican gastronomy or enjoy ecotourism adventures in our magnificent national parks, mountain ranges, rivers and beaches.
Known for our warm and hospitable people, Dominican Republic is a destination like no other, featuring astounding nature, intriguing history and rich cultural experiences like music, art and festivals, plus uniquely Dominican specialties such as cigars, rum, chocolate, coffee, merengue, amber and larimar.
Dominican Republic features the best beaches, fascinating history and culture, and is a chosen escape for celebrities, couples and families alike. Visit Dominican Republic Ministry of Tourism’s official website at:
Ministry of Tourism of the Dominican Republic