Portugal as a tourist destination

Travel agents and tour operators in Brazil are interested in any new strategies from Portugal to promote the country as a priority tourist destination for Brazilians, but point to problems.

Portugal Car Hire"For Portugal to become a top tourist destination there must be investment and a long-term effort to consolidate the brand", explains Paulo César Soares, top man at RDTours, a travel specialist based in Rio de Janeiro.

"Creating a destination is a function of government, it’s a long-term job. For us to work out if it is really worth investing in a destination or not, you need to know if the government is willing to invest, and to make Portugal known to the Brazilian market."

Soares currently works in the niche 'colony tourism' sector, usually with young Brazilians, descendants of Portuguese emigrants returning to Portugal to visit relatives.

"It's nostalgia tourism, often regular trips and restricted to a destination with no intention of touring the country," said Soares.

The current annual flow of Portuguese traveling to Brazil is between 250,000 and 300,000 tourists per year, half of the figure four years ago. The same has happened in numbers from Brazil to Portugal, due partly to the aging of the Portuguese community in Brazil.



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