Larger cruise ships can tender

| 06/10/2015 | 141 Comments
Cayman News Service

Allure of the Seas

(CNS): Just over three years ago the previous administration was in talks with Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines to tender the Allure of the Seas, one of the cruise firm’s largest ships, debunking the myth that the mega class of ships cannot tender. Correspondence released following an FOI request by members of the Save Cayman campaign, which is trying to prevent the destruction of the George Town reefs to make way for concrete piers so the larger ships can berth, reveals that the ships could still tender and that the local firms and government were prepared to make the necessary security investment and tender upgrades.

Email exchanges that took place in December 2011 and January 2012 indicate that the cruise lines and CIG were talking about the details and the upgrades that would be required to start tendering the Allure of the Seas that year. A presentation was also made to the cruise line by the local tender firms regarding upgrades and commitments on the number of tenders to service the ships, as Caribbean Marine and government were making arrangements to provide the necessary security upgrades at the Royal Watler and the necessary housing, which was estimated to cost less than three quarters of a million dollars.

The current government and the pro-port movement continues to state the misinformation that the larger ships cannot tender. They argue that, since the mega ships are expected to dominate the regional cruise market in future, Grand Cayman must have piers, otherwise not only will cruise business fail to grow but the island will eventually be dropped from all itineraries. But the emails demonstrate that the issue of tendering is a matter of choice. The large ships, like any other, can be tendered and a permanent anchor spot found to accommodate them.

However, as he delivered the news last week that, despite the massive and irreversible destruction of the reef, the government was pressing ahead with the port construction plans, the premier again stated that without the piers the cruise ships will stop coming.

Campaigners who want to see government take a different approach to maintaining cruise business in Cayman have pushed the idea of tender upgrades and the local tender firm is willing to invest in whatever upgrades are necessary if the government drops the berthing plans. Caribbean Marine Services said that it has been waiting for government’s decision regarding cruise berthing for eight years, which has posed problems for future investment.

“CMS cannot invest heavily knowing that the business is going to close,”  a spokesperson told CNS. “In the past eight years CMS has continued to upgrade its service where it can, with the introduction of camera systems, top deck loading systems, ship hook up points and more environmentally sound propulsion systems.”

In the absence of a decision regarding the future of cruise berthing versus tendering, the firm has been reluctant to go further but can easily accommodate the needs of the large ships. The problem is that the government must enter into negotiations with the cruise lines over the issue. CMS explained that in 1999 cruise lines were insisting that their new ships could not tender but each time they returned to Cayman with these very ships when they realised the firms could meet their needs.

CMS also stated that if government could negotiate for improved and secure tendering for an investment of some $10 million instead of the hundreds of millions cruise berthing will cost, the larger ships could still come.

The tender firms also say that with double-deck loading the ships can be tendered speedily and warn that cruise berthing is still no guarantee that passengers will remain on shore any longer or spend more. The cruise ships’ logs show that even in ports with piers, ships stay no longer than eight or nine hours — the same time many ships already spend in Cayman.

As well as time spent in port, there are a list of factors that impact how much cruise passengers spend, including the order in which ships call on ports, the prices at each destination, and what activities passengers plan at certain ports. Therefore, campaigners argue, concrete piers do not guarantee any increase in expenditure per head.

Based on their own research, the Save Cayman campaign warns that ports with piers allow passengers to get back on the ships without waiting for a tender, so they are less likely to eat on shore, which could result in them spending less in local restaurants. The campaign found some 60% of cruisers return to the ship for lunch in some destinations with piers.

Email exchange re cruise tenders no.1, 20 December 2011

Email exchange re cruise tenders no.2, 29 December 2011

Email exchange re cruise tenders no.3, 9 January 2012

Presentation re cruise tenders and visits by Allure of the Seas

Tags: ,

Category: development, Local News, Marine Environment, Politics, Science & Nature

Comments (141)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Found this on the Florida Caribbean Cruise Association Web site from one of their surveys direct quote

    The Cayman Islands had the fifth highest number of passenger and crew onshore
    visits with 1.67 million visits and the fifth highest volume of direct expenditures, $208
    million. The Cayman Islands also had the third highest average total expenditure of
    $124 per passenger and crew visit. The $208 million in cruise tourism spending in the
    Cayman Islands generated 4,454 total jobs and $876 million in wage income during
    the 2014/2015 cruise year.

    Didn’t they want the pier for people to spend $90 per cruise guest? So whats the problem?

    link
    http://www.f-cca.com/downloads/2015-cruise-analysis-volume-1.pdf




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    • Anonymous says:

      I guess you didn’t join this conversation or at least didn’t read anything the last 4 months. Spend here was already 95 ish.

      Spend in other pots gets to $185 per pax

      If we wanted 90 per pax we would have been asking for a decrease.

      Our per crew spend is half other ports because of tendering.

      Our spend per pax is 50% lower.

      We have been looking at all the same report you just don’t seem to understand them.

      One more Stat. Caribbean marine services got 5.50 per person in 2012. They took a 25 cent increase in 2013 with another planned 50 cent increase that year.

      All in all they make more than 60% of what our country takes in taxes.

      Do you think that is right?

      You are calling greed in the wrong direction my friend.




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  2. Anonymous says:

    These documents clearly demonstrate that this is all about one thing – RCCL profits. Look at the last page of the Presentation – Operating costs not passed through to guests.




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  3. Anonymous says:

    A large percentage of the coveted stay over guests we enjoy first came to Cayman on a cruise.
    Sounds like some people want to cut cruise off but that would be like throwing out the baby with the bath water.




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    • Rhett says:

      Diving, Windsufing, Kite Sailing, Snorkeling are a MAJOR draw. Pristine waters.




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      • Anonymous says:

        It’s a good thing we have tons of it and only talking about one tiny area where no tourists can do any of those waters ports that will be dredged.




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    • WaYaSay says:

      There is NO evidence printed anywhere that supports your statement.
      To the contrary, there is evidence that cruise passengers who may have visited Cayman as stayover tourists forgo that possible visit after stopping for a day on a cruise ship, once they see how expensive the Cayman Islands really are.

      Fixing the high `cost to the tourist is far more important than a dock versus tendering. I also agree with Rhett below, water quality and clarity are one of our biggest attractions, not a dock.




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      • Rhett says:

        Many frequent cruisers which RCCL has plenty of and markets that proudly, DO indeed stay on board. I know first hand as I stayed on board and chatted. The ships offer Spa Specials, Drink Specials, Entertainment ~ p.s. The ships sell Turtuga Rum Cake, Rum, have the same jewelry from the major stores in town, etc. Most cruisers also eat only on the ship as there is an ABUNDANCE of food avaiable 24/7, already included in the passage price. A dock……easy to go back to the ship to bring back purchases then decide to stay on board. Been there. Done that.




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      • Anonymous says:

        It’s called common sense if some one stays for 3 days instead of 4-6 hours they are going to spend more money, making them more valuable.




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  4. Anonymous says:

    CNS- what happened after these talks in Jan 2012? Why didn’t they start tendering the Allure of the Seas?




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    • Anonymous says:

      Go read the last line of that email where it says royal wanted the tender boat fees cut in half. Radio silence from the tenders after that.




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      • Anonymous says:

        Ah, makes sense. Interesting that the Compass pointed that out. They stated that Royal required reduction in tender fees; and that the deal didn’t happen, and that this was an attempt by the government to do anything they could because businesses were CLOSING because the cruise tourism was down.

        Wonder why CNS didn’t include that in their article????




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    • Kittygirl says:

      Because it was not economically viable given the needed parameters. Just because someone considers a scenerio, does not make said scenerio a reality.




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  5. fyi says:

    The 1 comment that is heard every day by cruise passengers when they visit grand Cayman is always that it is too expensive for them..being transported by a tender is not an issue to them and having a dock will not make a difference Grand Cayman is the most expensive place in this region




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    • Caymanman says:

      Yes but the higher class ships bring higher class clientele that pay more per person for their cruise and thus are our target demographic for stayover tourists (i.e. these are the people we want visiting).
      The majority of our cruisers come on Carnival ships, nothing wrong with those but it is more of a “budget” option. Royal Caribbean, Norwegian and Disney are the higher priced cruises and bring the clientele that could afford a stay over trip should they like the island. Again I still only think this is worth doing if the TOTAL package is fixed (downtown needs to be upgraded, cruise ships need to buy in, the whole experience needs to be first class because these people are paying top dollar)




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    • Rhett says:

      New, modern, larger tenders and a building with A/C, a few local merchants, food items (conch fritters!), etc. Keep the culture alive! So many ports are looking the same….herd the cattle in from the ships…..




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  6. Juan Valdez says:

    We don’t need no stinkin” dock! Where you put 6000 touristos??




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  7. Rp says:

    I am against the concrete as I think we are better off focusing on over night tourist and exclusivity rather than competing with third world countries for mass, low income tourism.

    However, if give wants to go ahead, how will they ensure that cruise ships will not pause arrivals until the construction is over? How is PPM comfortable that the port will not be delayed or stalled as John Gray HS?

    I am worried that this project will be more expensive than estimated, the time to complete Wil be much longer, cruise ships will be forced to avoid cayman during construction and explore other competing jurisdictions during this phase. Those jurisdictions will do all they can to steal the business from us during this period. What if they are successful?

    PPM what is your plan to ensure we don’t lose our clients during construction phase?




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    • Anonymous says:

      Agreed. Real value comes from Stay over guest. The value of a stay over guest is AT LEAST 3-4 times more than any cruise ship guest on the fact they stay for much longer. Every bit of money stay over guest spend on doing activities/excursions goes directly to Cayman instead of the 1/3 or more of the money cruise lines take for each person. There is no benefit for the excursion side with building the pier tours are maxed. There is no room for added guest volume because only the quality of the tour will be hurt and the resources




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      • Anonymous says:

        Yes, but they don’t spend money in the stores of the companies that have been lobbying the Government and skewing the CNS votes. Give into the Kirk-bots. Resistance is futile.




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    • Anonymous says:

      you mean the third world countries that do mass low income tourism, the same third world countries that make vacations affordable to all and sundry, the same third world countries that have 5 star cuisine, lots of activities for cruise ship passengers who then become stay over visitors, are you talking about those third world countries, the ones that don’t price goods out of the reach of people who actually save up diligently to go on a vacation, those third world countries?




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    • Kittygirl says:

      I believe the ships would dock at the North and South terminals, as the did for donkey years before we wasted money on the completely useless and ill thought out Royal Watler terminal.




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  8. Anonymous says:

    The government owns and runs the turtle farm, and has for a lot longer than you’ve probably been on the island. It is an important part of Cayman’s history.

    Cayman Airways coats the island money, yet you don’t seem too worried about that. Along with the police department, fire department, hospital, infrastructure and roads etc all lose money. Yet ou aren’t worried about that at all.

    Blame the government, not Timmy, who has been an outstanding Caymanian and great ambassador. I would have told that punk the same thing in that situation.




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    • Anonymous says:

      The turtle farm is a disaster and has been ever since government bought it from Mariculture/Jim Woods. But the turtle farm has little to do with Cayman’s history. Few in Cayman ever ate green turtle soup (the original reason for the turtle canning operation in Salt Creek). If you want to promote local turtling history build a schooner and sail down to southward.

      Cayman Airways is a big hole into which Cayman pours money in return for highly debatable benefits.

      Police, fire, hospital, infrastructure and roads are necessary services that governments in developed countries provide out of the taxes they collect. That doesn’t give them a free pass on wasting public money or failing to perform.




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  9. Big Bucks says:

    CNS thank you for sharing these documents. I see that the tenders were making $5.50 per person in 2012. Can you confirm if they have had an increase from that?

    I also think I see where the negotiations on the possibility of tendering the Oasis/Allure broke down:

    The very last point says “Other 1) An additional item that RCCL wanted was 50% reduction in tender fees”

    I can imagine that is exactly where the conversation ended.




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    • Hilary says:

      I see Mac was using his personal email address to do Government business on. So I guess it was okay for me too.




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    • Shhhhhhhh. says:

      The cruise companies are incredibly greedy, want all the profits on their side, want the tendering cheap like everything else, and look at what Sand Bar and Stingray City boat operators & others have to accept for each passenger booked onboard by the cruise line. It is ridiculous that for a simple sales booking / computerized operation, they can earn more than a water sports operator who has to buy a boat, insure it to suit the cruise line, staff it, fuel it, maintain it, provide transport, and literally do all the work! There has to be a better way for our operators to get bookings and a reasonable profit margin.

      Also, I recall Keith Sahm pointing out that the ride on the tender caused cruisers to see our reef and water quality, and then buy diving, snorkelling etc as a result. A very valid point indeed!!




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  10. Anonymous says:

    I find it funny how the pro port lobby says how many jobs will be created by this port? Chris Kirkconnell came on this very forum to say that the majority of caymanians they employ, work in the back offices.

    So answer me this. IF this dock cause a serious increase in their business (which has yet to be proven), WHY would this cause them to employ more accountants/secretaries??

    When your revenue numbers increase you don’t hire more back office. The same accountants just punch bigger numbers in their calculators, the same inventory managers just order more merchandise and the same owners put more money in their pockets. Trickle down is a lie. Just look at the income gap increase in America as an example.

    I wish they would stop with all this “it will create caymanian jobs” nonsense.




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    • Anonymous says:

      You must not be a very well versed business person. Every part of a business is scaled. If sales are up every department of the organization increases. More sales means more data entry, more accounting work, more IT needs, Increased logistics team, more work in after sales and of course more sales people. I don’t know their organization intimately but it is fairly basic to anyone that has owned a business.




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      • Anonymous says:

        You must not run your own business. If you run a business where you hire more upper level people when you get a marginal increase in profit, you won’t keep that afloat for very long. You talk about scales but it appears you have no clue how they apply from what you have written. How is increased sales numbers more accountant work? Do you understand what accountant work is?

        If there is a major expansion in a business that needs more accountants, that would come in the form of satellite offices and expansions in the order of 10.
        will the dock increase the waterfront businesses 10 fold? Will they build another red roofed plaza?

        I wouldn’t invest any capital in a business you run. I hope you aren’t a kirkconnell because that dock won’t save you from poor business sense.




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    • Anonymous says:

      You don’t know how a business works. You must be a civil servant, because you seem to think money and jobs just pop up out of thin air.




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      • Anonymous says:

        I know they just don’t pop out of a poorly planned endeavour. They pop out of newly created fields by innovation or expansion in profitable businesses.
        The desperation by the waterfront merchants highlight that their businesses are declining in profitability.




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    • Anonymous says:

      The pro-port are relaying info from PWC’s report and economic study. Don’t blame them, if anyone blame the global financial firm who is independent of any conflict of interest and are experts in their fields, who estimated the gaining of 1000 jobs. Whether those jobs go to Caymanians, that is a point worth fighting for, but don’t try to deny it won’t create a substantial amount of jobs, that would not be smart.




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      • Need to Know says:

        Why do the pro porters have access to the PWC report if it is not yet in the public domain?




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      • Anonymous says:

        Yes, it will create a lot of jobs during construction. How many Caymanians do you think are experienced in dredging, underwater construction and land reclamation? How many Caymanian site supervisors will be overseeing all of this work that they know so much about? How many Caymanian project managers will be managing this project which is very similar to others that they have managed? That’s what I thought. Better questions: how many Caymanians with jobs downtown that depend on the CURRENT level of cruise activity will be made redundant during construction, and then replaced with expats? How many attractions and businesses will have to close down for months if not years during construction (even the ones with interruption of business insurance – not many)? How much noise, traffic and unsightly industrial equipment will the legal and financial services firms based in George Town have to put up with on a daily basis – all for the purpose of clogging up the streets and sidewalks even further down the road with cruise ship tourists (the worst type of tourist)? Where is the planning for the construction period?

        Also, I am a professional and I can tell you, every firm engaged on a project like this understands that they are to find and use the most suitable data and assumptions for the purpose of supporting their client’s aims, and then write a report that provides as much support to those aims as possible. That’s what the client is paying for. You don’t write a report that your client will be unhappy with, unless you have absolutely no option. And the truth is that accountants may have expertise in modelling scenarios, predicting the future through assumptions and available data and so on, but lots of what they put into their reports is just conjecture, guesses, ‘short cuts’ by way of what’s available – essentially, they don’t really end up with anything that’s much better than the educated guess of an educated person. It’s not scientific. So they aren’t worth much, unless they say what you want them to and then they’re better than nothing. And that’s all we have here.




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        • Anonymous says:

          So you are saying that Baird delivered a report to support what DoE requested?




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          • Anonymous says:

            Baird delivered a report in accordance with the Terms of Reference set following appointment of a Steering Group, an Environmental Advisory Board and public consultation. From all appearances that process has now broken down due to insistence on having the data massaged to the liking of the “Git er Done” faction.




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  11. Tim Adam says:

    CNS … You are propagating more misleading nonsense from the pro-tendering lobbyists “Save Cayman” … and here is the latest example from your article:
    “Based on their own research, the Save Cayman campaign warns that ports with piers allow passengers to get back on the ships without waiting for a tender, so they are less likely to eat on shore, which could result in them spending less in local restaurants. The campaign found some 60% of cruisers return to the ship for lunch in some destinations with piers.”

    CNS have you studied the last (2012) BREA report
    “ECONOMIC CONTRIBUTION OF CRUISE TOURISM TO THE DESTINATION ECONOMIES: A Survey-based Analysis of the Impacts of Passenger, Crew and Cruise Line Spending”
    to analyse the huge difference in economic impact between
    Average per-passenger/call spending in Cayman Islands i.e. that has no cruise berthing and no “Oasis” class ships calling: US$93.70
    versus
    Average per-passenger/call spending in the five countries in the survey that have the “Oasis” calling (and obviously each of those countries DOES have cruise berthing): US$124.78?

    It sounds like you are taking “Save Cayman”‘s opinions as gospel when you have readily available extensive survey report readily available to draw these sorts of conclusions.

    So let me make this simple:
    The AVERAGE of those five countries gets 50% per passenger/call MORE SPENDING than the Cayman Islands so
    please don’t propagate the spurious argument that this going-aboard-for-lunch possibility with berthing, means cruise berthing results in less spending ashore. That is bunkum.

    And also CNS have you realized how far behind the Cayman Islands is in per-crew/call spending? The AVERAGE of those five countries gets 99% per CREW/call MORE SPENDING than the Cayman Islands. That is an even more glaring ongoing huge economic deficit that the Cayman Islands is suffering in comparison to other Caribbean countries where “Oasis of the Seas” berths.

    And why are your key articles on this topic so often avoiding such an important social and economic factor that “Save Cayman” apparently doesn’t want to touch: the positive impact cruise berthing will have on the creation of jobs in our community?




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    • TURTLE RANGER says:

      TIMMY

      “SHUT UP….SHUT UP….YOU ARE BEING INSUBORDINATE BUDDY….INSUBORDINATE AND IT WONT BE TOLERATED IN HERE ON MY WATCH!!!!”

      Instead of blogging shouldn’t you be in a HR or Anger management course? You have zero credibility in the public arena my friend




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      • Anonymous says:

        Interesting comment coming from an anonymous blogger. Not much credibility to that buddy.




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      • Anonymous says:

        Props to Timmy for telling that punk where to shove it. I would’ve done the same thing. Too meant young Caymanians don’t understand what work is, they think they can slack off and are entitled to a job since they are Caymanian. They think they are invincible. Someone has got to tell them how the real world works and I applaud Timmy for standing up against slackers.




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    • R.E. Dacter says:

      You are fortunate enough to be paid to manage a taxpayer subsidised economic white elephant. Now that may also qualify you to manage the CBF, but it also effectively precludes you from being qualified to judge whether it is a good idea in the first place.

      Where is Billy when Cayman needs him most!




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    • Anonymous says:

      Using your numbers(if they are even real). This 300 million dollar dock will increase passenger spending by $31.08 per passenger/call. SO lets say we get 2 million cruise passengers per year after the dock is built. So thats 62 million extra per year spent by passengers. Lets say on a high estimate 60% goes back into the local economy (remember that businesses take profit from customer spending and merchandise isn’t sourced locally) so thats 37 million per year going back to the economy. Given your number and a high estimate on actual impact on local economy.

      So it will take 10 years AFTER the dock is built before it is even has a non negative effect on the economy. 10 years after it is built before the islands on a whole sees any benefit of this. And add to that time how long it will take to build.

      So we should destroy our environment and empty the government surplus on a gamble that might not pan out, as the cruise industry might go through a few changes in two decades.

      This is what you are saying?




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      • Caymanman says:

        The $300m is not going to come from government because they don’t have it. It will come from Cruise investment and be paid out through reduced head tax on visitors. So there is no $300m “hole” to crawl out of, but yes, there could be a 10 year period where head tax is reduced by $30m per year to pay off the pier. In the meantime passenger spend (and the economic trickle down that it will create) will be up approximately 50% per guest.
        More importantly, cruise numbers won’t reduce. If we can keep at the current rate of cruisers (or increase slightly as predicted by the KPMG report) we can keep the current workers employed and hopefully create some more jobs. Even the most optimistic person would agree that losing jobs in the current climate is not an option, crime is already higher than ever, we need employment and less people reliant on gov’t hand outs.
        The one point you made that I agree with is that there will likely be changes in the next two decades in the cruise industry, but what is certain is that those changes will not revolve around more tendering. We are a decade behind already, the dock will help with Cargo and Cruise. The quicker we get to a finalized plan which mitigates enviromental impact as much as possible and meets the criteria of the cruise industry the quicker we can start catching up and hopefully be ahead of the changes that will come in the coming years rather than playing catch up like we seem to in every situation except global finance.




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        • Anonymous says:

          Look what cruise investment did for Falmouth.




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          • Mythbusters says:

            You mean did “to” Falmouth. Upland reserved for the cruise line and favored big business partners with a fence to keep the local small businesses outside.

            Big business calls this trickle down. The little man calls it scrabbling for the scraps.




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          • Anonymous says:

            Apparently not a lot. There have been complaints that little or none of the money is going into the local community as RCCL and other investors involved take the lion’s share of the profits and other benefits.




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        • Anonymous says:

          One thing I think no-one puts into the payback equation is the reduction in tendering costs. Those costs need to be put into the equation as they are significant. Why do you think the tendering company is so against the port. Also what is the environmental impact of all the tendering boats compared to the doc. They also have harmful effects on the environment and potential accidents that could effect both human life and marine environments.




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    • Need to Know says:

      Why is Mr Adam, a public servant, permitted to lobby on behalf of the pro porters?




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      • Anonymous says:

        A very good question. Especially in the odd guise of haranguing CNS and other posters.

        Billy! Help! Cayman needs its best environmentalists in this fight.




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  12. Anonymous says:

    We’ve been having this dock or no dock debate since the late 90’s, I remember them saying the cruise lines wouldn’t come if we didn’t have a dock back then. My concern with building a dock is that at some point, probably in the not so distant future, it won’t be able to handle the ever larger ships, we will be always playing catch-up at ever increasing cost and impact. As for how we pay for the dock the last time I saw anything on this we were going to have to give up the per head docking fees of about $20 per person, this seems to be so that private business can benefit from the roughly $90 head/person spent on island. So in essence the Government pays out $30mio/year with no direct benefit, so that private business can earn $135mio, great for private business, not so great for everyone else. With the reality that maybe cruise numbers go down 20% if we don’t build a dock (guess?), Government would take in $6mio a year less than they do now, vs a guaranteed loss of $30mio a year if we build it. Great to perusade someone else to foot the bill to make more money.




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    • Anonymous says:

      I am glad someone is focusing on the MATH of this. It doesn’t add up in the favor of the general public.




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  13. Anonymous says:

    Another busy night for the Kirk-bots.




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    • Anonymous says:

      I think this comment went over their heads, thus a majority of thumbs ups. Or maybe they are all sleeping now or busy shining up the jewellery displays.




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  14. Anonymous says:

    Anyone else get the feeling that the pro-porters have a small army of their cronies in here liking the pro-port posts and disliking all others? The ratios seem way off knowing that the majority of the country is AGAINST the port development as it stands.




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    • Anonymous says:

      The majority of Caymanians are in favor of the piers. All three polls documented that.




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    • Kadafe says:

      hahaha your right. sitting around on their ipads giving thumbs down to anything against the piers. what they need to realize is no matter how many thumbs down they give to a valid point does not decrease the value in the point!




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    • Anonymous says:

      I was thinking the same thing….the majority is not pro-port! its a coincidence for sure as the numbers don’t add up!…and dis save Cayman all you want….its not just them that are anti-port its THE PEOPLE!!!




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  15. Anonymous says:

    OK so the people on the higher deck can see the bigger dump from further away. Good!




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  16. Anonymous says:

    Misleading misinformation again distributed by SaveCayman and the tender operator who are one of the same. Just think for one minute, we have SaveCayman and the tender operator trying to dictate to the cruise lines how to run their business, telling them that CMS can tender everything. Let’s clarify one thing, it is the cruise lines that are making the decision in running their business that their larger ships cannot be tendered. $10m will not make one bit of difference in the tendering issue. Just go on board the existing smaller ships that call to Cayman and see for yourself what the cruise lines have been trying to tell us for years. They commence discharging passengers at 8.30 am and do not finish until after lunch. Does that sound like efficiency, not to mention the long lines ashore of passengers waiting in line for well over an hour sometimes to return to their ships.
    Stop this scam of misinformation and talk the truth for a change, the people of Cayman are far more intelligent than you think to be fed this absolute BS.




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    • Anonymous says:

      This was not of Save Cayman, but an FOI that will be posted on the SaveCayman Site later today, showing the plans that Government and RCCL were in agreement on.

      CNS: The emails and presentation are now all attached to the article.




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    • Alie Youat Ell says:

      If your only argument is that this is about saving the tender business (and that is the only argument), the easiest solution is for Chris and Robbie to go buy some tenders and compete. Bottom line remains however that there is no legitimate business case that supports the need for this monstrosity and nowhere for all the fantasy passengers you pretend are coming to go.




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    • Anonymous says:

      So obvious that you are in here making all of these posts and have your little army liking all your comments. Bet everyone can guess your last name as well.




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    • Anonymous says:

      The misinformation is that they are done tendering way before lunch. I am at the pier everyday cruise ships are so quit lying about the time it takes.




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  17. Eyes wide Shut says:

    Word from the wise. If you really think no one in government has spoken to the cruise lines to find out if Genesis (Oasis) class ships will come to Cayman without berthing you are really fooling yourself. This is not an easy decision to make so you can guarantee they have thoroughly vetted this one. Maybe this article fools a couple people into pretending there is a chance these ships stop here with tenders but come on, most people can see with their own eyes, some of them literally can see with their own eyes, that the Oasis ships go right across the north side of Cayman every week.




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    • Anonymous says:

      They’re not going to come anyway so don’t fool yourself they will. Royal Caribbean have no plans to bring Oasis class cruise liners to Grand Cayman and building the dock will not change that.




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      • Anonymous says:

        If Royal was talking to CIG about the possibility of coming here that would seem to prove you wrong.

        If we build the dock they will come.




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        • Ida Reyou says:

          Prove it.




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        • Anonymous says:

          7:32 The key word is ‘possibility’ and a that was nearly four years ago – four years is a long time in the tourism industry and the cruise industry has made, and is still making, a substantial move away from the target markets of those days. Add to that the 2-3 year build time for the dock and that possibility becomes more like impossibility. Wake up – it ain’t going to happen.




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        • Not so smart as ... says:

          Kevin Costner – you have a lot to answer for




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      • Tim Adam says:

        “Anonymous 07/10/2015 at 6:59 am” have you spoken to any of the senior officials at Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines or to the Master of their ship “Oasis of the Seas”?
        I have.
        And they leave me in no doubt: they DO WANT “Oasis of the Seas” to stop here as it passes very close to here every time they sail the route from Falmouth to Cozumel and Grand Cayman is a desirable destination on cruise itineraries, but they REFUSE to put their passengers through the agony of the inevitably long wait times etc. to get off and back on the ship because of the realities of the tendering process.
        And I can’t blame them.

        It is not that technically these large cruise liners cannot get passengers off and on via tenders. “Oasis of the Seas” has stopped in Grand Cayman on more than one occasion to let one or a few persons off for a medical evacuation.

        The reality is that, despite what the “pro-tendering” lobby want you to believe:
        a). cruise passengers dislike having to use tenders instead of simply walking off or on to the cruise ship on a gangplank at a pier;
        b). the tendering process inevitably causes relatively long and somewhat unpredictable wait lines on board the ship to get off, and on land to get back on the ship, especially at peak disembarkation and re-embarkation times;
        c). the cruise lines are not going to agree to something that puts their customers through such an uncomfortable and frustrating experience that is barely tolerable for smaller ships and entirely intolerable for the larger ones. Even the most skilled government negotiators are not going to get the cruise lines to change that very wise and sensible strategic approach to ship itinerary planning.

        Please be intellectually honest. Quit trying to upset and mislead by talking about things of which you obviously have insufficient knowledge, insight or information. In other words, if you can’t improve on silence, then stay silent.

        Tim Adam




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        • Anonymous says:

          8:01 Are you the same Tim Adam who is currently costing us $millions running the turtle farm or are you a troll?




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        • Anonymous says:

          Timmy you have time to be writing on CNS and talking on the radio about how badly we need a $300million dock?
          should you not be using that time to figure how to trim your operational expenses by a meager 10%? That would save Government $1million per year.
          You will notice I am not asking you to stop the loses altogether as you have no clue how to run a successful business in the real world.

          You of all people should be pro tenders while asking Government to build the tender dock down by the turtle farm. This would achieve two things, your customers would be dropped off at your front door (incidentally exactly what the successful business men that are pro dock are asking for). It would also reduce the congestion in town (if we increase the numbers of cruise arrivals) for people who only come ashore there to catch a cab to the Turtle Farm, the dolphin experience or stingray city.




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    • Anonymous says:

      Haha, you can’t be serious! You are talking about Government so to say that they have “seriously vetted this one”……….I am sorry, but history has always show that many decisions by Governments haven’t been thought through all that much!




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  18. Fact Checker says:

    1) How many Oasis ships have scheduled a call into Cayman since the first launch in 2009 – Answer 0 (not counting the less than handful of medical emergencies where one person was brought to shore)

    2) How many of the Pro-Port group have ever said you “cannot tender” the Oasis – Answer 0 (they only point out the fact that Oasis WILL NOT tender)

    3) How many tender only ports does the Oasis include on its itineraries – Answer 0

    4) How many of the Pro-Port group have said that ALL ships will drop Cayman – Answer 0 (they only state that Cayman will see drastically reduced calls over time)

    One thing that CNS did get right is tha the matter of tendering is a matter of “Choice” and the cruise lines have chosen NOT to call on tender ports with the Oasis class ships.

    One BIG piece of advice. The FCCA conference is going on. When the minister and anyone else that went on the trip comes back, ask them if they really think Oasis ships WILL tender in the future.




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  19. Tender Mercies says:

    Let me say at the outset that I am completely opposed to the dock because it cannot pass muster on any economic basis and due to the obvious environmental damage and risks.

    However, the tender operators surely must bear a good deal of blame for the position in which they find themselves today. Had they upgraded and improved their tender fleet over the course of the past three decades they would be better placed to argue that their system is the best approach. By now they should be running modern, high speed, air conditioned, cats instead of the decrepit old buckets that they have been using for so long.

    They have had a monopoly to print money and clearly never thought the spigot might be turned off.




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  20. Anonymous says:

    It looks like the anti port group have found themselves in a little bit of a sticky wicket.
    There has been a massive campaign on their side trying to say that coral can’t be relocated. When the estimated cost comes in everyone says “well since the scientists and environmentalists say it won’t work why will we spend tens of millions on it”
    Now not only are they going to have to prove that we should actually attempt to spend to relocate they are going to have to find much better evidence than a couple of emails exploring the possibility of tendering the big ships that in reality have no desire to call into a tender port.




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    • Anonymous says:

      There is not sticky wicket…. The Coral Formations cannot be moved or mitigated.. Who said this estimated cost was even correct or doable? Same people that gave themselves a 70% grade?




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  21. Anonymous says:

    This should be a really easy one to sort out. I imagine that an FOI for this is just smoke and mirrors. A simple call to RCCL would sort this out really quickly.

    Or just go to their website and count how many tender ports are on the itinerary of either the Oasis or Allure.

    RCCL actually own some islands of their own. Go to their website and see how many of those with tendering only the Oasis go to. Simple answer is, if they won’t even tender into their own island do you really think they will tender in to ours?

    You will see that if you count on one hand you’ll still have all 5 fingers left untouched after browsing through the whole list.




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  22. Anonymous says:

    I am soo sick of misinformation from the pro dock kirkbot huggers. You guys need to get your heads out of kirk’s third point of contact and smell the sea air instead of the concrete mixer. Every study, agreement and discussion with all parties involved points very heavily to NOT building the dock but you idiots. ….Wow, sounds like the pro dock stupidity is starting to rub off on me. Why don’t you start selling watches that work for more than a week.




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  23. Anonymous says:

    Trying to keep tendering going vs a dock is like comparing a typewriter to an Ipad. It just doesn’t work anymore.

    Save Cayman has only one goal and that is to keep the tender parent company alive. Even if it means at the detriment of the country. There is nothing else to say about this.




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    • Cheese Face says:

      Bollocks mate, I couldn’t give a flying fig about CMS, I do care about the trashing GTH for a couple of shortsighted businesses though.




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    • Anonymous says:

      and the reef is like a macbook pro, so your gonna destroy a macbook pro for a iPad stfu




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    • Rocktheboat says:

      Pocket first for these guys. Since they are so protective of the environment, ask them to list all the programs they have funded to save and or protect any part of the natural environment over these years. It really stuns me to see how these people are so greedy, that it blinds any reasonable judgment to even care one iota about the future of the country. Even if the port project does not go through, the current process is not sustainable for the future. Not!! So we dare you to provide any other solution across the aisle, that will take away your income. The one that you have been milking for years. That will prove everybody wrong and that you do indeed have country first at heart.




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  24. Anonymous says:

    If the only FOI Save Cayman put in to CIG was to find some glimmer of hope for the tender operators that is a massive tell on their intentions.




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  25. Anonymous says:

    Once again a propaganda story from CNS that ignores reality. Royal Caribbean have said publicly time and again that they will not tender these ships in the Caribbean. They backed this up when they decided to move from tendering to a dock facility at Labadee, their private island in Haiti before Oasis was launched. They have been as good as their word and not tendered Oasis class since 2010 when the ships were introduced.

    Every week one of the Oasis class passes within 10 miles of Cayman as it moves from Jamaica to Mexico. If Royal Caribbean thought it could tender these ships, don’t you think they would have publicly requested that the CI government provide the facilities for this so that they could stop off? The answer is that they have become increasingly frustrated and disillusioned with a Cayman that is schizophrenic about cruise tourism, proposing at least 5 different port schemes in the last 10 years but doing nothing to create a positive guest experience.

    Trying to move 6,300 guests a week from one ship by tender will also not provide a positive guest experience, however much the tender company would like this to be true.




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    • Anonymous says:

      Just warning you sometimes it is like talking to a wall in here. Most people know, even those against the dock but they just keep telling the same stories.

      I agree with every single word you have said. The Oasis class ships will keep sailing by and the tenders will keep pretending there is a chance they will stop while they collect whatever money they can smiling. Somehow many people buy into the fairy tale.




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    • Anonymous says:

      And why do you think Allure of the Seas sails straight past heading for Cozumel? It’s because that’s the way these mega-liners operate, with more days at sea and fewer stops. If you’d ever seen what these ships are like on board you’d seriously wonder why people bother to get off them anyway. This particular itinerary routes Ft Lauderdale – Nassau – Falmouth – Cozumel – Ft Lauderdale with three full days at sea. Even if you build the dock there’s no slack in the schedule to divert it to Grand Cayman. This is all wishful thinking because the bottom line is that Royal Caribbean’s business plan does not include using the Oasis class on low revenue destinations like GT – in fact the way the vessels operate they’d probably lose money making the stop.




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      • Anonymous says:

        Interesting opinion but wrong. The cruise lines continue to be focused heavily on providing a great guest experience as they know this drives guests returning. The #1 factor that drives a positive guest experience is the variety of ports of call and guests generally like Cayman. It’s clean, safe and has a great beach and best retail in the western Caribbean. However they don’t like the fact that it can take up to an hour to get off the ship in the mornings and a 30 to 40 minutes to get back on in the afternoon.




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        • Not so smart as ... says:

          I’m pretty sure one of your pals higher up the line just claimed it takes at least twice that long to get on and off.




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      • Robin says:

        Holy Toledo! Does Mose know this?




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    • Anonymous says:

      Once again the reality and the facts stare you in the face and you spout pro dock propaganda. You do the kirconnells and hamatys a great diservice by assuming the Caymanian people are ignorant enough to believe your bs over good reporting and scientific and political FACT.




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    • Andrew Overthrow says:

      Interesting anonymous should mention Haiti. Isn’t that where the cruisers berth at a beach on the island where everything is provided – from water skiing to jet skis – and the cruise tourists never venture any further than that beach. Bet that helps Haiti’s overall economy




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    • Anonymous says:

      RCCL also said you could not tender Freedom Class, Voyager Class and Quantum Class… But come December 5, all three of these would have been tendered, even the Quantum Class…. Oasis could be next, if our government has the cajones to stand up to the cruise industry…




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  26. Anonymous says:

    One word….. Titanic




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  27. Caymanman says:

    With these Straw Man arguments you just make yourselves less credible…the pro port group have not said that the big ships can’t tender. They’ve said that they won’t, and the proof is that none of them ARE tendering here.

    I’m pro environment and pro Cayman, I’m not advocating for environmental destruction, I do still believe the piers can be built with minimal damage and that we’ll find a “best case” way to please most. These unbalanced nonsensical arguments detract from the real issues – mitigate the damage, make sure the funding is in place, have buy in from the cruise companies, fix downtown, enhance our overall tourism product.

    Let’s find a way to mitigate the environmental impact, perhaps it’s the gondola idea, perhaps it’s something we haven’t yet thought of. Even with the current proposal the actual direct impact is minuscule when taken in context of the total shoreline but we can come up with something better and with CNS blowing it out of proportion and biased arguments (some of which are made up like the subject article) the actual issues are getting brushed aside with the rhetoric. Write some balanced articles which explain the true negatives and perhaps we can get sensible counter proposals, the fairytale sky is falling stuff is old hat now and it’s having a negative global impact by misinforming the masses.




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  28. Anonymous says:

    Sustainability verses development….the uniqueness of the Cayman Islands is the underwater experience and what has build its tourism destination…less not forget what happen years ago with the hurricane that flooded the entire island and cause havoc….are we quick to rush into development….our environment must take center stage especially with the situation of climate change…




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  29. Ron says:

    One look at the seaweed on 7 mile beach show how fragile our ecosystem is a messing with it will forever destroy 7 mile beach. Guaranteed if those piers are built 7 mile beach will be lost especially after northwestern. Take a look at the Marriott beach as an example.




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    • Anonymous says:

      Ron, stop the bs educate yourself, the Marriott built a sea wall directly on the seven mile beach in front of their swimming pool, when the waves came in they created an under current by bouncing on that wall which caused the sand to erode, are these piers being built on the beach? or in the GT harbour which already is a deep water port, looking at the proposed area to be dredged will make no difference to 7 mile beach 2 miles away. Stop the BS ignorance.




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    • Yo No Soy Marinero says:

      Honestly Ron, had the seaweed covered up all the broken down beach chairs and cheap umbrellas that the illegal vendors have strewn across the beach, it would have been a very positive thing indeed.




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    • Caymanman says:

      Marriott overextended. They were fine when it was Radisson and all of that frontage was beach, then they paved it all to create the pool deck and put up a seawall which led to the erosion. They were warned about this extensively by older Caymanians who’d seen that beach expand and contract over decades. There is a natural current that runs up and down 7MB in storms (Nor’Wester brings beach to the south, then it slowly goes back North until the next Nor’Wester). The sargassum has nothing to do with any of that.




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  30. Anonymous says:

    Even with just one ship, as we had today, visitors not participating in cruiseline booked tours had to wait approx. two hours to disembark. That severely limits their time on Island for whatever activity they wish to engage in. We absolutely, without question, need a competitive dock. I see all of these posts about ‘rich’ merchants. It is largely BS. Who is rich? The tender operators, that is why they are so up in arms. I can double my staff if we have the new port. That is good for Cayman. That is good for everyone. Sorry Adrian, but it is true.




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  31. UK Driftwood says:

    The sensible option. When the contract ends put the tender business out for competition. Everyone says how many millions are made they will be Falling over themselves for the contract.
    State of the art boats great experience and millions saved to spend on social housing health care education and the dump




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    • Anonymous says:

      No sane person would do this. Tendering is a thing of the past no matter how badly CMS doesn’t want to hear it. Investing in new tenders would be a waste of money. If CMS thought differently they would have done so years ago.




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    • Anonymous says:

      And how would you like to put your business out for tender? See how loud you would be shouting.
      The tendering business were started by two genuine Caymanian business men, the original tenders were built in 1974 right here on our iron shore by our own Caymanian ship builders, i wouldn’t want to see this part of our heritage and our local business destroyed through the lack of vision and consideration. To destroy their service is like destroying our history. These tenders have played an important and integral part of our cruise business, what would we have done without them?




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      • Anonymous says:

        See the problem with your argument is that you are making reference to the 70s. Tendering was fine back 20 or 30 years ago but now is a whole different story.




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      • Anonymous says:

        CMS raking in money for old rope! While the rest of us struggling.




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      • Anonymous says:

        So do you still take the schooner when you leave the island? Times have changed!




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  32. Anonymous says:

    Letting the cruise ships keep their gambling operations open while in Cayman waters would probably have a bigger impact that the dock.




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  33. Anonymous says:

    If you take stroll through the cruise critic website and search Oasis and Tendering you gather a wealth of comments showing that not only Royal says they will not tender, the passengers speak about how impossible it would be to do so.

    This is some pipe dream that the tenderers hope for obviously but there is no way this will ever happen in Cayman.

    Do you really need much more proof than seeing the Oasis and Allure passing by Grand Cayman only a mile or two away every week but not stopping here (other than to let one medical emergency person off). Fuel prices are the biggest cost on a cruise for the companies. If we were a real option with tendering they would waste time passing us and they would stop.




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  34. Cache Refresh KF.KY says:

    The Kirk-bots will be stirred out of “sleep mode”
    Cache refresh ready. Check.
    Kirk-bots ready. Check.
    Operation Thumbs re-commence in 3-2-1-Go!




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    • Anonymous says:

      Yeah boy, anything pro-dredge and pro-cruise berth, the Kirk-bots be mashing up the Likes button as if it going out of style.




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  35. Anonymous says:

    Of course the other point is that Royal Caribbean have no intention of wasting their Oasis class vessels on backwaters like Grand Cayman anyway. Check out the current 2015/16 itineraries. Neither Oasis nor Allure of the Seas is coming anywhere near here. In fact the bulk of their cruises are at sea where the passengers can enjoy all the facilities of a combined floating resort and shopping mall without needing to go ashore.




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    • Anonymous says:

      That is because we do not have a dock. Sometimes the answer is so simple but no one wants to see.




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    • Tim Adam says:

      “Anonymous 06/10/2015 at 5:19 pm”
      The current reality is “Oasis of the Seas” crossed within about 6 nautical miles or so along the entire north coast of Grand Cayman, every Wednesday during high season and has continued doing so every other Wednesday during summer season. From Falmouth to Cozumel the straightest line comes very close to our island. Look at a map and check it out. So I don’t know why you consider Cayman is some “backwater”.

      That Oasis class ships are presently frequently coming so close to Cayman may be an inconvenient truth for the pro-tendering lobbyists, but it doesn’t make it any less true.

      And have you heard about the third Oasis-class ship “Harmony of the Seas” scheduled to be coming into service around Spring 2016?




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      • Anonymous says:

        Wednesday is already incredibly busy, If not sometimes the busiest day of the week. Every Excursion is maxed out, Stingray City is a mess, and GT is chaos what is giant ship like that going to help with.




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  36. Anonymous says:

    The campaign of misinformation is making my head hurt. Methinks we put this topic down again and let it cool off while we fix the GT Landfill, finish the John Gray High School, complete the 2 additional lanes of the Linford Pierson Highway, etc.




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  37. Anonymous says:

    No one has ever said they can’t tender, they won’t though. So if they won’t, technically they can’t. It’s not an option. The cruise companies have made that decision due to the length of time it would take to tender.

    That’s like saying that you could fit 100 people in a bus that holds 60, but it would be a miserable experience and you probably would never want to go on that bus again.




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  38. Anonymous says:

    You could tender 1,000,000,000,000 people too, it just may take 10 years for them to unload. The cruise companies have said they won’t tender the larger ships because they know it will take even longer than the miserably long time it takes now with the smaller ships.

    We are lucky then don’t stop tendering smaller ships since that experience is awful, as everyone can see the lines wrapping around town in the sun or rain.




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  39. Anonymous says:

    Unfortunately, it is not up to the tender company, who of course want to get the business and money from these bigger ships. The cruise companies have been very firm about the fact that they believe it would not be a pleasant or acceptable experience to make their guests wait in line for hours.

    Talking to the tender company about whether they can or cannot accommodate the bigger ships is pointless. Their opinion will obviously always be that they can, even if they can’t, because they want the extra money.




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    • Anonymous says:

      likewise to the pro port Donkeys




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    • Alie Youat Ell says:

      The people in the know are well aware that the issue lies not with the tenders but with the security lines when returning to the ship. A big ass piece to concrete does nothing to alleviate this, competent people do.




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      • Tim Adam says:

        “Alie Youat Ell” … So according to your logic, do you mean to say the reason there are long lines to get OFF the ship to get on the tender to reach George Town is because the ship’s security team is incompetent too?
        … And extrapolating that, do you really believe that ALL the security teams on ALL the ships are incompetent too? {Because let’s face it they ALL have similar uncomfortable wait times in line to get on the tender to get ashore …}

        {“Alie Youat Ell” Do you read the stuff you write before you post it?}

        Tim Adam




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    • Anonymous says:

      That argument then does away with listening to any of the big merchants downtown argue for the port. You can’t have it both ways!!




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    • MAH says:

      Then you need to ask the cruise companies to clarify how long guests are waiting in line and on which days, which cruise ships experience lines, what percentage of cruise passengers complain about the lines in Cayman and why an improvement to the poorly paved walkways, lack of shade, lack of refreshments and improved dockside handling and tender service would not be an acceptable alternative? If the information and statistics have been shared by the cruise association let’s see the data. Spending $150M+ to shorten a line wait from x to y for an undetermined or guaranteed amount of future customers does not seem to make economic sense if you have a more speedy solution with far less consequences for the country.




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  40. MAH says:

    Finally, a proposal the country can afford!




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    • Anonymous says:

      We don’t have $5mln, let alone $10 or $300mln. It’s all fantasy at this stage. Unless Dart writes a big check for Safehaven freehold.




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  41. Anonymous says:

    It is not a matter of “can” it is a matter of WILL they tender. So far after 6 years of trying to call their bluff there has not been once that an Oasis ship has added Cayman.
    There are 400,000 potential passengers from Oasis class ships each year that pass by Cayman. I would imagine that at $5 per head it wouldn’t take much to convince CMS to put what money was needed if they thought it would be an actual reality.




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