The first cruise ship is expected to resume regular calls to Hurricane hit St. Maarten in early November.
The first cruise could be making a return with regular sailings to the Hurricane hit Eastern Caribbean island of St. Maarten. The cruise port on the Dutch side in Philipsburg is doing its best to be ready by November 11. Port authorities are actively in discussion with cruise lines on making a return to the popular cruise destination.
Port St. Maarten stated the following:
Port St. Maarten Management understands the importance of the cruise sector to the national economy, and is working diligently with the cruise lines and local stakeholders to have the first commercial cruise ship with passengers in port by November 11. Discussions are currently underway with a number of cruise lines with respect to itinerary planning for November.
This all depends of course if the services to support thousands of cruise ship passengers can be restored. They will have to see on the status of local stores, shore excursions and more to provide a great shore experience for ship guests.
The sooner cruise ships start returning to St. Maarten money can begin helping local businesses which have been devastated by Hurricane Irma and Maria in September. The local economy will benefit from the money spent on shore by passengers and no doubt the cruise lines will keep the aid coming in too.
St. Maarten Port continued with:
In order for the aforementioned to happen, a number of links in the chain of offering a good cruise experience needs to be in place such as shore-excursions, tours, shopping (Philipsburg), restaurants and other amenities.
Port Management met with the Council of Ministers on Wednesday where an update was provided with respect to the state of affairs at the Dr. A.C. Wathey Cruise & Cargo Facilities. Government offered assistance from the various ministries to assure that the country can deliver the best possible experience to cruise passengers when they return to the destination.
Bouncing back from Irma should be the country’s number one priority. Banks and insurance companies are well aware of the importance of making available rebuilding loans and monies that would facilitate a quick economic jolt into the nation’s economic engine.
Port of St. Maarten has announced that two cruise ship berths will be available from November 1st and until cruise ships return the berths can be used to bring in relief and supplies for the residents of the stunning Caribbean island.
Carnival Fascination is among the ships originally scheduled to call in St. Maarten on November 11 so could be the first cruise ship to start regular calls there. The Fantasy class ship has already been involved in relief efforts and providing urgent supplies to Hurricane hit destinations in the Eastern Caribbean.
Keep an eye out on Cruise Hive, we’ll let you know the latest on cruise ship ports impacted by the powerful Hurricanes of Irma and Maria.