Cruise ship ban extended to year-end

| 11/10/2021 | 73 Comments
Cayman News Service
Cruise ship in George Town Harbour

(CNS): Cabinet has officially approved the extension of the ban on all cruise ships coming to the Cayman Islands until 31 December, according to notes from the government’s front bench meeting on 28 September. The vote will see the formal regulations updated, leaving the possibility of their return on 1 January, but given the current situation with COVID-19 and the challenges posed by the virus for cruising, it is very unlikely that we will see ships of any significant size in the George Town Harbour next January or for several months after that.

The Cabinet Post Meeting Summary also revealed that the government has approved the waiver of tourist accommodation tax for all licensed tourism properties for the last quarter of the year, since the borders are not expected to open this year before the end of November, if at all.

An addendum to the risk sharing agreement with British Airways was also approved, as were the latest Control and Management of Covid-19 (Amendment) Regulations, 2021.

Business unrelated to the virus including a vote on the Christmas 2021 stamp issue, a new peppercorn lease of Crown property to the Cayman Islands Crisis Centre and
appointments to the Health Practice Commission, including Dr Ruthlyn Pomares as
Deputy Chair and Dr Eugene Foley as a member.

Carlos Powell was appointed chair and Walton Gooding as deputy to the Electrical Board of Examiners, while, Merlin Welds, David Crawford, Timothy Howard and Edlin Moore were appointed as members.

See these latest and previous Cabinet notes here.


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Category: Business, Politics, Tourism

Comments (73)

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  1. Non Hater says:

    The Good News: You won’t need to worry about Covid coming to your shores by way of tourists – wealthy or poor, because no tourist wants to vacation in a place where they are esteemed so poorly. It leaves a very bad taste in my mouth reading these rude comments. I had always felt like Caymanians were kind hearted, and lived by the golden rule; however, it just looks as if I’ve been played all these years. “Give us your money and leave; You’re not the kind of tourist we want; You must not have been vaccinated if you are a Trump supporter, or believe in God, or are poor, or are rich, or are some other fellow human you disdain; We don’t want people from cruise ships, they want to spread viruses, and destroy the planet; We don’t want people to fly in unless they stay in quarantine, and isolation – under house arrest – because they MUST be liars, and forgers of vaccination status, they must WANT to come to Cayman and spread disease, and kill people”
    It’s not only the tourists you are trashing in these posts, but each other as well. I’ll paraphrase: “This or that government or official is crap; You lost your job – too bad, get another one; Those restaurants are crap; Caymanians are lazy,” Honestly, do you think anyone wants to be around all of this back biting, anger, judgement, and hatred??

    So yeah – don’t worry about when the borders open, and to who – I highly doubt many people will want to come because of these PR nightmare comments I’ve been reading since Covid began.

    Now for the Bad News: You can sit in your utopia jail, living a life with little interaction with other cultures, little risk, and very little fun (name anything fun and thrilling that doesn’t involve risk – like scuba diving, driving, overeating, giving birth, falling in love). You can get, and fully recover from covid, you can add vaccination, get a booster shot, triple mask, hand sanitize, social distance, exercise and eat right – AND STILL, in the words of a song I heard The Barefoot Man perform several years ago “You’re still gonna, still gonna, still gonna die”

    You have not had to deal with Covid like those of us in the US, so you watch the influential media, and look up studies; but you really haven’t dealt with it as a nation and community. It’s an unknown, and I get it – you’re afraid. But, don’t let that fear change who you are, and make you hate. It will break your spirit, and ruin what was great about your country. Since we are all “Still Gonna Die”, maybe we should use our remaining time to be kind to others.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Ban them forever. The cruise ship companies commit economic rape and Cayman falls for it.

  3. Anonymous says:

    It always amazes me that people say that cruise ship tourism is important to stayover tourism because people come here on a cruise, like it, and then come back as a stayover tourist. Who the heck would like what they experience when they come here as a cruise ship tourist? To go with getting ripped off like you say, the only nice things to do in the few hours they are here are packed with hoards of people and then they have to stand in a cattle line to get back on to the ship. And most of the restaurants the might go to are serving them absolute garbage. I once met a friend who was visiting on a cruise ship at Paradise Restaurant on the harbour for lunch. It was the worst meal I have EVER had in the Cayman Islands – truly disgusting. Hopefully the new ownership will improve that place because it’s a stunning location. Another time I was stupid enough to meet someone else for lunch at the old Tiki Beach, before Kimpton took it over. Again, it was an absolutely horrendous meal. It became obvious to me that the restaurants that cater to cruise ship tourists don’t care at all what they serve them since they’re gone within hours after the meal.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Ban them forever, terrible guests and terrible rip off prices for bad services offered by people here to them. People charging 50 kyd for a cab to eat a burger somewhere, we can do better,

  5. Anonymous says:

    Cayman kind.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Yes I hate cruise ships but we need revenue,well the people that work tourisim for a living loves the cruise ships because that’s how we make our honest bread,when the cruise ships are in we go to work and try to make money so we can pay our bills in that way we don’t have to sit and wait on the government for any hand out,many thanks to those who hate cruise ship

    • Anonymous says:

      The tiny cut the cruise companies pay might make a few people a living but it’s at the expense of our environment, quality of life and our stay over tourism product. Times move on and cruise ships need to be relegated to the past.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Smaller stay over luxury cruise ships, which have high net worth travelers, who spend money locally, should be the target market for the Cayman Islands to open up to as visitors.

    The larger cruise ships, with lower level income demographics, are likely to bring COVID, but not likely to be as financially beneficial to the Cayman Islands.

    As it stands now, it is important to be careful that we don’t have overly populated crowds of cruise tourists, who don’t spend money in the local economy.

    • Anonymous says:

      That’s right cuz only the poor bring Covid. The rich are immune.

      • Anonymous says:

        After this, obvs..

      • Anonymous says:

        The rich, at least most of them, are more likely to have brains enough to get vaccinated and believe that Covid is real, and therefore take sensible precautions. Cruise ships like Carnival are crawling with disease-carrying Trump supporters from red states where people believe Covid is a Chinese hoax caused by 5G or some other such nonsense and that the vaccine is the mark of Satan.

        • Anonymous says:

          Actually it is the poor areas that have the door to door vaccination, the neighborhood medi van, the state vaccination sites are usually in the poorer areas and the wealthier travel in.

          • Anonymous says:

            And why do you think that is? I’ll let you figure it out, but I’ll give you a hint: It’s not because the wealthier aren’t getting the vaccination.

        • Anonymous says:

          I so wish you were right but plenty of rich people supported Trump and i have met Americans on island who are vaccine skeptics. Wealth is not predictive of intelligence (or lack thereof). The better argument for HNW cruise tourism is two-fold i think: more money staying in Cayman and fewer passengers to monitor.

          • Anonymous says:

            It’s a matter of numbers. Sure, there are outliers – as you said, wealth is not necessarily predictive of intelligence. But a much larger portion of wealthy people – who tend to be more highly educated – are vaccinated than the poor and ignorant.

      • Anonymous says:

        That is what you are saying when you want only the wealthy to come, but not those poor tourists as they spread Covid. So ridiculous.

  8. NOT says:

    I will so miss all those thousands of people roaming around GT with no particular place to go. NOT

    • Anonymous says:

      And all the other islands in the Caribbean that are welcoming will be glad to accept the business.

      • Anonymous says:

        Exactly! It’s a source of income and people are to proud to accept it. Tell me how it’s smart, especially these days. Instead of trying to figure out how to make the best out of it some are willing to just say no to money. Well, someone else will take it and use it for living. Bills don’t pay themselves.

      • Anonymous says:

        Fine. Although you’re wrong. Many other cruise destinations are also pushing back against the exploitation of their environment by the cruise lines.

    • Anonymous says:

      And what do you think you look like when you travel?

  9. Anonymous says:

    It’s sad how George Town was torn down to nothing but a cliche tourist town full of cheap souvenir shops. Cut out cruise tourism and restore our capital to the prestige it once had. Turn some buildings into mixed use, and have people move into downtown. Create a community.

    • Anonymous says:

      While your at it edumacate your children to a modern level and get yourself out of the third world, make the island self sustaining, get rid of guns, make the dump disappear and legalize pot.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Nothing but human cattle ships with a few trimmings. Scrap them all, the planet will be much better without them.

  11. Anonymous says:

    “We don’t need no stinkin’ cruise ships.”

    Best said in a Mexican accent

    • Anonymous says:

      With all the time that has passed during the COVID ban it’s a wonder that every able bodied Caymanian has been trained in some sort of job and that no expats are needed. It’s what the people and Goberment always say they wanted. I wonder how that works out.
      Probably less working after the pandemic ends. Waiting on a hand out as always.

      • Anonymous says:

        Caymanians wondering how to actually do the jobs expats do well is why it has never worked before. Nothing has changed. Not even the stupid excuses.

      • Anonymous says:

        The problem is that training and basic education are two different things. Educated people can be trained to do a variety of jobs. Uneducated people … not so much.
        Fix the systemic education problem – which starts in the home by the way – and then we can have a real discussion with the malcontents who believe they’re being slighted.

    • David says:

      You don’t but I’m sure the business end wants them so they can rent on everything they own unless of course Cayman government paying them but I don’t see that since a hand full has shutter their doors.

  12. Anonymous says:

    We should just say no to mass cruise ship human pollution.

  13. Anonymous says:

    I would be happy if we banned them forever.

    • Anonymous says:

      So long as Mac is in power, the Cruise port will be an ongoing possibility, and the Chinese just waiting for the next opportunity.

    • Anonymous says:

      Every single person I’ve spoken to in the last 2 years has said the same!

  14. Anonymous says:

    Let’s take this time to rebuild smarter. RCL are now using biometric passenger recognition software (IDEMIA), and CBP digital ID software on return to USA. Cayman’s new passport kiosks leap us into the early-2000s on the tech side, but we need to advance to modern day with Passport Apps. In days past, the liners would be in charge of verifying (or not verifying) those passengers embarking, often with as little as a state driver’s license or other lesser photo ID, and those names would be delivered as passenger manifest from the liner to the port. For our port of call, we can set our own rules and should at least insist upon Federally-issued passport ID, just as we do with inbound airline traffic. We can also remind our guests that no guns and ammo are allowed, no briefcases full of cash, no stolen jewellery for pawn, we drive on the left, we are now officially (supposed to be) welcoming to gays, etc. We can control the guest quality if that’s the intention, and with that, increase the disposable income, average spend, and conversion ratio from cruise to stay over guest categories. The later should always be the tourism objective of cruise traffic.

    • Anonymous says:

      I think the Cayman Islands objective of cruise traffic should be to permanently ban it. Far more harm than value.

    • Anonymous says:

      3 shootings over the weekend…2 mass shootings in the past few months and you want to tell the guests off the cruise ships that no guns and ammo are allowed?

  15. Anonymous says:

    Just ban them completely. Nothing but cheap people and viruses on the cruise ships anyway. We also don’t want that port garbage coming back up.

    • Anonymous says:

      Please continue to Ban tourism, tourist, Any customers and all expats. But please continue to bring in the money that feeds us. We hear you. Stand by.

    • Anonymous says:

      I have a friend who makes over 100,000 a year who cruises everywhere because they have a terrible fear of flying. I think you just assume there are cheap people on cruise ships. You know what they say when you assume. BTW- she is triple vaxxed.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Hopefully the Department of Tourism has used this “pause” to evaluate our cruise tourism strategy and to “tweak” it so that it is working for, and contributing to, our country.

    • Anonymous says:

      LOL……The Hon Minister for Tourism is too busy making vacuous videos to bother about that.

      • Anonymous says:

        He’s also too busy making sure he gets re-elected by promising his constituents more pay for less work.

  17. Puke Pill says:

    Which year?.

  18. Anonymous says:

    is this no-plan-pact’s way of saying quarantine protocols for incoming tourists will be in place till end of year???
    it can only mean that.

    • Anonymous says:

      Oh, shut up. It doesn’t necessarily mean that. Cruise ship tourists are much different that stayover tourists. Not allowing one doesn’t mean the government won’t allow the other.

      • Anonymous says:

        Please explain the difference….of tourists stepping off a boat or a plane?

        • Anonymous says:

          Quite simple, if you but think about it. Stepping off a plane equals stayover, with hotels, restaurants, even grocery, perhaps taxi and car rentals.

          Stepping off a boat (which is usually all-inclusive) equals people milling about looking desperately for a beer and a bathroom. There may be a t-shirt sale involved. On rare occasion, a gem or two might be purchased.

        • Anonymous says:

          Huge difference. Go do some research. 400 bucks all you can eat on a carnival cruise for a week (7 nights) in December. 3000 bucks a night, no food included, for the worst little room overlooking a highway in December, per night. Different world of people.

          • Anonymous says:

            I usually stay at mid to high end resort properties and I’ve never taken a cruise, but I would if I could find one for $400 in December.

  19. Me says:

    So you going allow cruise ships to come before airlines can come? Bull

  20. Anonymous says:

    Should be year end forever.

    • Anonymous says:

      Tell it to the people whose income depends on cruise tourism. See what they tell you.
      So selfish.

      • Anonymous says:

        So things should stay as they are forever rather than move with the times and have people retrain? My father was a typewriter repair man. So we should have just not bothered with computers and all kept using typewriters so he could keep his job?
        What nonsense. There is no such thing as a job for life any more. People have to be prepared to change careers and retrain when there is a pivot point in society or technology. I have changed careers and retrained 3 times now and its been refreshing and rewarding to move into new areas. You can’t keep flogging a dead horse, or in this case a sinking ship.

        • Anonymous says:

          Create those jobs first. Then we shall talk. Unless you have an alternative in the coming months, all you do is talking unrealistic rubbish.

          • Anonymous says:

            There are already hundreds of jobs out there in Cayman waiting to be filled. That’s why there are so many people from overseas still coming here, because the local people do not fill the existing vacancies.
            Now that may be because they are unwilling to do said jobs, or unrealistic about their skills versus the opportunities. I hear from teachers how school leavers expect to get a job as a bank manager or a manager in a certain business or profession but without anything other than school leaving qualifications and no experience. So there ARE jobs, but people aren’t being realistic about doing what’s available, or training to go into certain professions. Like sitting around for almost 2 years now waiting to deal with cruiseshippers (and taking free money off the government) instead of getting up off their backsides and looking for another job that is hiring.

            • Anonymous says:

              Brilliant comment. Well said.

              • Anonymous says:

                But why say ‘no’ to cash that cruise ships generate? Make the best out of it instead of shutting down a source of income. How is it any smart?

      • Anonymous says:

        Drug dealers depend on the money their junkies give them. Should we allow that?

      • Anonymous says:

        Nobody’s income depends on cruise tourism. There has been none for almost two years. Retrain and adjust. There are much better, more lucrative and sustainable options available.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes i hate cruise ships and the tourists who just meander around GT. I also dispise some of the tour operators who extort the passengers.

      That said, the lack of income from tourist (along with the exorbitant spending from CI GOV) is somewhat scary and the financial future of the country needs stabalising.

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