I don’t know who is behind the World Travel Awards, but the prestige that comes along with a media partner such as the BBC is seriously damaged by some of the errors contained in the list of nominees. At least in the Latin America section, I wonder whether the treatment given to other parts of the world is equally poor.
First, there is a geographic section called Central & Latin America and a different one called South America. Someone should be taught that South America is part of Latin America.
Second. One of the five nominees in the category of South American airline of the year is the Brazilian airline Varig. I imagine the only criteria applied when drawing up the list of nominees is the money paid by the companies to buy their placement on the list. Otherwise, I don’t get it. Varig is a company that nearly ceased its operations, that left thousands of passagengers stranded worldwide, and that fired thousands of employees violating all sorts of labour rights. Is that company among the best in South America? You’ve got to be kidding.
Third, the fun continues. Among the nominees in the category best South American beach is Pernambuco (sic). A minor problem: Pernambuco is not a beach, but a Brazilian state with hundreds of beaches – including those in the archipelago of Fernando de Noronha, miles away from the state coastline.
Embratur, responsible for a substandard website, is nominated in the categories Leading Overall Travel Information Website and Leading Tourist & Convention Bureau.
Among the best airports in Latin America we find Galeão in Rio and the mysterious São Paulo airport. Will it refer to Guarulhos airport? Or will it be Congonhas airport? But, hold on a second. Two Brazilian airports among the nominees? I don’t even want to think what those airports not on the list must be like.
Now we can just wait and see who the winners are. I’d love it if the Pernambuco beach was elected – and I’d love to see the news reproduced in lots of blogs of the copy and paste generation. Travel agents will go mad trying to find hotels at the Pernambuco beach. Oh dear, oh dear.