Sat | Jul 11, 2020

Dave A. Chin Tung making people’s lives easier

Published:Friday | October 11, 2019 | 12:20 AMPaul H. Williams/Gleaner Writer
Denice Grant (left) and Shantol Douglas representing Hedonism II at Go! Jamaica Travel Expo 2019.
Denice Grant (left) and Shantol Douglas representing Hedonism II at Go! Jamaica Travel Expo 2019.

You cannot be a major ­stakeholder in the local and international tourism and hospitality industries and not know Dave A. Chin Tung. He is the indefatigable and affable operator of Go! Jamaica Travel, a popular tour agency located along Trafalgar Road in St Andrew.

Chin Tung recently told The Gleaner that he has been in the field of tourism and hospitality for over four decades and that the way things are, he might be around for another four. He cannot help himself.

“It is a lot of work, but it’s just that I love tourism,” he said.

And over the years, his company has earned many local and international awards for his hard work. They include the 2019 World Travel Awards for being the Caribbean’s Leading Tour Operator and the Caribbean’s Leading Destination Management Company. Go! Jamaica Travel has also been voted Jamaica’s leading travel agency.

What, then, is the driving force behind all of these accolades?

“Customer service. It means being available 24/7,” Chin Tung replied ­without hesitation, after which he explained how once, he and his staff had to be available to clients from 6 a.m. one day to 2 a.m. the next.

He has worked, he said, in every aspect of ­tourism, including air transport.

“I have done all sorts of things. It is just a major passion,” he said. This enthusiasm grew into the establishment of his own company 24 years ago in his dining room.

“And it has grown and grown,” he said.

It has evolved into his ­planning and execution of his own show, Go! Jamaica Travel Expo 2019. It unfolded in the Talk of The Town inside The Jamaica Pegasus hotel on Friday, October 4, and from the look of things, it was a smashing success for a first-time effort.

Yet it was by chance that Chin Tung got involved in tourism. He was born and raised in Port Antonio, Portland, in a ­family that descended from the very first set of Chinese ­indentured ­labourers who came to Jamaica in 1854. His great-­grandfather was among them.

He went to school in Kingston, Canada, and New York, but did not study tourism. While he was in New York he wanted a part-time job and landed one in the field of tourism, and, as they say, the rest is history.

It is a very busy life that Chin Tung lives, but it is not just about being a ­butterfly or a bee for himself. He is ­making life ­easier for people all over the world, especially the ones who come to Jamaica to unwind and relax.

Chin Tung might be diminutive in physical stature, but he is a dynamic dynamo, ­blazing trails on the local and ­international ­tourism landscapes.