Thursday, February 29, 2024

Still hope after tourism troubles

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The COVID-19 pandemic may have delivered a knockout blow to Barbados’ tourism hopes for the 2020/2021 season, but tourism officials remain optimistic.

Cruise ships were scheduled to make 423 calls at the Bridgetown Port bringing 835 000 passengers between October 2020 and April 2021, but yesterday chairman of the Barbados Hotel & Tourism Association (BHTA), Geoffrey Roach, suggested those hopes were likely dashed when the cruise industry was not expected to rebound before next year.

“We don’t anticipate that cruising will be back in any meaningful way until about mid-2021,” Roach said during a virtual media conference.

His comments came days after the Norwegian-owned cruise ship operator Sea Dream Yacht Club cancelled sailing for the rest of the year after its ship SeaDream 1 recorded several COVID-19 positive cases among passengers and staff on its first Caribbean cruise, forcing it to return to the Barbados homeport, where the cruise was curtailed and affected passengers quarantined or hospitalised in instances of severe cases. (GC)

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