FAQs about St. Maarten handbook published by Tourist Bureau

The St. Maarten Tourist Bureau (STB) has just published FAQs about St. Maarten – The Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Handbook.


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According to STB, the handbook is intended for a planned certification course for tour guides and other hospitality professionals that come in daily contact with the over 1 million tourists that visit the island annually.

The 86-page handbook answers over 80 questions, and identifies numerous other information or reference points of interests that visitors to the island tend to ask and that the people of St. Martin, especially in the hospitality industry, could now have readily and accurately at hand.

House of Nehesi Publishers (HNP) coordinated the handbook’s research and publication as part of a larger guidebook being worked on, said HNP president Jacqueline Sample during the just concluded St. Martin Book Fair.

Scheduling challenges prevented STB head May-Ling Chun from making a presentation of the publication to tourism stakeholders during the book fair.

The 27 chapters or categories of FAQs about St. Maarten are: History; Language; Geography; Infrastructure; Economy; Currency; Government; Education; Sports; Hotels; Transportation; Health; Religion; National Symbols; Nature, Environment, and Parks; Culture; Media in St. Maarten/St. Martin; Telecoms; Day Trips; Photography Do’s and Taboos; Good Manners/Bad Manners; Dress Code; How Safe Is the Island?; Emergency Numbers; The St. Maarten Tourist Bureau; The Saint Martin Tourist Office; and, Maps of St. Maarten/St. Martin.

The teaser question on the cover asks, How well do you know St. Maarten? but FAQs Q&As are hardly exhaustive and the handbook is designed to be upgraded as STB sees fit or as demand for new information increases, said Sample.

"FAQs about St. Maarten is designed as a quick-and-easy read and study-helper for a certification course, but it will probably be very hard to keep the book out of the hands of a general population that is ever more hungry for quality information about the whole island," said Sample.

While the cover design may give the impression that the handbook is expressly for tourists, it is really for professionals within the service industry, tour operators, airport, port, tourist office, and culture department information officers, taxi and bus drivers, tour guides, travel and entertainment media, travel agents and writers, immigration, hotel activities directors and personnel, front desk, bartenders, waitresses, and store clerks, especially in businesses that are in constant contact with visitors from the region, the Americas and around the world, said Sample. STB requested and approved the cover design last year by the Tambourine firm.

FAQs about St. Maarten is the abridged version of the guidebook project initiated by Regina LaBega over three years ago when she headed STB. "Ms. May-Ling Chun, Mr. Gus Priest and the whole STB have been gracious and helpful with working on the completion and receiving the FAQs handbook as part of the Tourist Bureau publication," said Sample.