Cruise business suffers with no dock in sight

| 05/10/2011

(CNS): Not having a berthing facility for larger cruise ships has been devastating to Cayman’s tourism product, industry members have said. Recent statistics from the ESO reveal that for the first six months of this year, cruise visitors declined by 3.4% compared to 2010. The latest figures from the DoT paint an even worse picture with cruise arrivals falling by 32% in July compared to last year. Trina Christian-Savage, Executive Director with CITA says if Cayman had a berthing facility in place the country would not be in this position.  “The harsh reality is that we don't, and there is no indication that we will any time soon which is devastating to this segment of our industry,” she told CNS.

Brynley Davies of The Image Group, a company actively involved in the cruise industry with membership on Cayman’s Association for the Advancement of Cruise Tourism, recently attended the Seatrade Europe show, the largest cruise-related show aimed at the European market where he said it was interesting to see things from a purely cruise line perspective. 

“I met with a number of lines who all said essentially the same things about the Cayman cruise product,” he said. “Cayman needs a dock to compete in the regional marketplace and until it gets one it will not be taken seriously by the cruise industry. In addition, the constant chopping and changing of potential development partners from Decco, to GLF to the Chinese looks really bad and the cruise industry is getting very mixed signals about what is going on and what the strategy is.”

Davies explained that cruise schedules are planned two to three years out and therefore the problems the Islands are seeing now are exacerbated by the fact that Cayman have had long terms failures in developing the cruise product from different governments. By comparison, the port of Falmouth in Jamaica won the Seatrade port of the year and now has confirmed business going forward for many years.

“It is being deemed a great success story and this success is being driven by the fact that Jamaica is focusing and has focused on the development of its cruise product,” Davies said.  “They have appointed someone who is in charge of developing cruise tourism in Jamaica, William Tatham. He is responsible for interfacing with the cruise lines and getting things done within Jamaica and it is working.They have also changed the way the funds collected are distributed. It used to be that head taxes went directly to the Government. Now the taxes go to the port authority which is charged with developing this infrastructure and making it successful. This is how Falmouth was developed.”

Christian-Savage added that the Cayman Islands Tourism Association continues to reach out to government to ask where Cayman is at with this latest deal and the most recent news stated that an agreement should be finalised by November.
“What that agreement entails exactly we do not yet have the specifics of. If we cannot afford to do the plan to the full size that has been proposed by the last few developers, then private sectors has continued to suggest an option of one pier for berthing. Ultimately whatever agreement government enters into, CITA's support is contingent on the results of the EIA,” she added.

Meanwhile, the latest statistics from the ESO show that air arrivals are at least sustaining the country’s tourism product but more needs to be done the CITA spokesperson warned.  Air arrivals increased during the first half of 2011 by 8.0% but Christian-Savage said this wasn’t down to any single thing.

“I don't think we've done anything that is earth shattering different in our marketing, although the strategy and media plan remain solid. The Department of Tourism and CITA's partnership is the strongest it has been in years which enables us to act in a smarter, more efficient way when we can support each other with international promotions that align with the needs of private sector,” she said..

Christian-Savage says that since the economic downturn, hotels have been much more aggressive about their specials, which has helped to keep the demand up during these tough times. “I am still told that the average spend per visitor seems to be less though. The good news is we are starting to see less rate sensitivity from some key markets.”

Going forward, she said that the private-public partnership has continued to hone in on specific periods that have historically been soft and CITA recently met with Cayman’s national airline to discuss ways in which they can work better together. “They have opened the door to the private sector for our views on which markets we would support if additional lift were to be added,” she revealed.

Christian-Savage pointed out that the addition of Westjet significantly helped increase lift from Canada which has proved to be a great market with restaurants in particular saying the increase in Canadians was good for business

The Ritz-Carlton’s communications director agreed that the Canadian market was important as visitors had the longest length of stay and highest spend of any market for peak travel periods. “The addition of the WestJet route is a textbook example of how additional airlift from a market with latent demand directly stimulates the economy well beyond the arrival numbers,” Melissa Ladley said.

The Washington DC route, which started last year, and the Chicago flights have also benefitted the islands and Trina Savage pointed out the importance of the right gateways.  “At the end of the day the key to stay-over tourism is three things: airlift, airlift and airlift!” she said. “Once we have this in place the rest can follow.”


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  1. Traffic in Red Bay says:

    The traffic in the mornings is already horrendous without everyone who lives east of Red Bay having to fight through cruise ship traffic at Hurleys.  What would the plans be to add additional routes from the east?  The bottleneck at the Prospect and Hurleys roundabouts can not afford to get any worse…

  2. Mr Westbayer says:

    Cayman will survive just fine without these cruise ships, dredging our underwater wildlife just to get money is just silly and awfull, what do we do next when we screw the whole eco system just for pleasure, get your XXXXX on a cruise tender and come ashore..People are so lazy these days and would rather destroy natures life to make their day easier.

  3. Anonymous says:

     “At the end of the day the key to stay-over tourism is three things: airlift, airlift and airlift!”

    Not exactly true (I was tempted to say 'B***ocks). When they get here you need somewhere for them to stay and that's one thing Cayman lacks.

    The key to stay-over tourism in the Caribbean is facilties that will cater for the European all-inclusive market. Cuba has them by the bucket load and they are (from personal experience) very good and very cheap.

    The whole problem with this article is that it seems to be quoting people who have no idea what the heck is going on in the worldwide tourism industry. They don't understand the way the market has shifted in recent years and is still evolving, they don't have any idea how to attract outside investment and they for sure do not appreciate how potentially valuable the UK/European market is.

    A multi-million dollar industry being run (and I use the word loosely) by amateurs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Interesting article found today on MSNBC regarding Cayman & China Harbour Engineering Company Ltd

  5. Anonymous says:

    I disagree with the few posters below and AGREE with the majority of people.  It is non sense to put these cruiseships in the exposed ocean like they would be in South Sound.  They need to go in Red Bay, certainly a lot has changed in Cayman since then, but by chance or by God's hand, that area has been one of the few to be yet developed, perhaps it's by chance or by divine power to allow a port to go there.

  6. Anonymous says:

    We need to unify and stop being decisive and get this dock up  – where the benefits far outweigh the costs and it fits in with the long term development plan for these islands ( i know we dont that but I think we have a sense of what it should be).

    Our Premier announced again a few days ago its going in in GT and apart from Choppy & Co I don't know anyone who really opposes the dock going into GT.

    It will be built in a way which will minimize disruption of sand transportation – based on studies done on this and EIAs – and therefore poses no real risk to 7MB.

    7 Mile Beach and George Town have been totally commercialised and over developed. Keep the development of that sort in GT / 7MB and lets keep the rest of this island pristine !

    This is the will of the people of the Cayman Islands. Both expressed in the Vision 2008 exercise (from 1998 which involved collecting the views of a very broad cross section of CI residents, Caymanian and expat) and also more recently in the Go East initiative report which was based on the desires of the people of the Eastern Districts.

    Yes we can have development in these still pristine areas – but only development which enhances the area and not radically changes and harms – and certainly not radically changes it in a way which the majority of citizens are opposed to!

    When tourists come here – and stay over – you know the ones who actually contribute more than $40 to island – once they leave their condo on 7MB – they want to get out and see the beautiful natural breath taking areas of our island.  They love the drive through South Sound (as it is! no concrete – and no cruise ships and giant piers!) and love the Northward, BT, Breakers, East End, North Side area. Because of the lack of concrete. Lets keep it that way please!!!


    • Anonymous says:

      Nothing says "Cayman Kind" like the offensive hanging nooses on that seaside home at the curve in Bodden Town.  It has been there since Ivan and thousands of confused tourists drive past that house every week what message are they supposed to get?    

      • Holly says:

        We were just there and I saw these nooses…..I am definitely curious as to what this is all about. Did you ever find an answer? Possibly something politcal?  3 nooses….3 islands?

  7. Anonymous says:

    The cruise traffic in town is a bane to GT business people and morning traffic. However, it is a necessary evil for our greedy government.

    Anyone been to St Thomas on a cruise ship day? How about St Croix?

    I have been on a cruise that docked at both. St Thomas off on it's own like Spotts or Redbay would be. They had row upon row of jewelry stores. Same same same all the same as here. Same chains, same jewelry but with aggressive eager sales people. You had to get a cab to town. The lovely little narrow streets were rammed with people going in and out of even MORE jewelry stores. Hecklers trying to get you in their shop. Loud cockaphee of noises. Aggressive rude street vendors (reminded me of our taxi drivers) selling their wares. Got in a cab and got outta town. Beautiful.

    St Croix – WAY off out of the way. NOTHING there but a few trinket shops. had to get a cab to go across to the entire other side of the island. Only plus was a Wal-mart in between that we stopped to shop in.

    Docked stops were an incredible change to be able to come and go as you please. No lines to get on and off. Was a breeze.

    Unless you have experienced this personally, keep your cake hole zipped.

  8. Caymanians for logic says:

    PROS of Red Bay Dock:

    1. All weather, single harbour for the first time in Cayman history
    2. Not disruptive to ongoing cargo or cruise operations.
    3. Significantly less costly to build
    4. Dredged material pays for Port & street renovation Downtown
    5. Quicker to build,
    6. Purpose built facility
    7. Ability to handle more traffic & passenger flows
    8. Construction in shallow water using simple sheet pile methods
    9. Distributes traffic, little new infrastructure needed.
    10. Close access to North Sound, Eastern Districts & Island Tours
    11. Breakwater safeguards Land and homes from hurricanes.
    12. Improves Channel from Sound to sea
    13. Provides new Mega Yacht Marina/New revenue source
    14. Can be expanded to full cargo in future inexpensively
    15. Breakwater structure provides new marine habitat.


    1. Increased Traffic congestion
    2. New roads needed to cope with bigger ships
    3. Closure of Harbour Drive
    4. No landside space to accommodate passengers
    5. Destruction of Cali Wreck
    6. Destruction of Cheeseburger Reef
    7. Continued conflict with cargo
    8. Space limited to 4 ships berthing
    9. Closed during Northwesters
    10. Requires second Landing at Spotts
    11. Potential damage to Seven Mile Beach
    12. Construction expensive as it is in deep water
    13. Construction disruptive to ongoing cargo & Cruise operations
    14. Visually Disrupt George Town as Ships are closer to shore
    15. Disrupts future sunset views from Hog Sty bay.
    • Anonymous says:

      You forgot one important thing.  Environmental damage to yet another area of the island.  G/Town is already damaged, so keep the port there.

      • Anonymous says:

        Caymanians for logics,

        Really unbiased assessment. You might want to consider the Cons of Red Bay and the Pros of GT if you'd like people to really think you are as logical as you claim to be.

    • Anonymous says:

      You also forgot that all the shops and infrastructure for tourists ALREADY exists in GT.

      George Town harbour marine environment is ALREADY trashed and will continue to whether or not the cruiseships go elsewhere with all the other ship traffic there.

      and a million others Cons for Red Bay and Pros for GT which other posters below have elaborated on.

    • Anonymous says:

      Oh disrupts the sunset views of GT – while the cargo ships are unloading anyway and those huge noisy trailer trucks are tearing in and out of the port and the crane is swinging aroundly wildly left right and centre.

      Ever tried to have a nice sunset dinner on the patio at Breezes by the Bay?


  9. MonkeyBiz says:

    Not sure I am educated enough about the reality of cruise tourism's impact on the average Caymanian, so if someone could direct me to a report or something I would appreciate it.


    I just don't understand HOW pasengers from the cheaper cruiselines which seem to be the majority of visitors actually have a big impact on our tourism revenue, when it has been factually shown they spend less! 


    Wasn't Cayman pushing to market itself to highend tourism?  if so, how do these cheaper (by the $) passengers benefit this market?  Will the proposed dock bring in more highend cruise visitors? Where do highend cruisers spend their $$ versus these cheaper cruisers?  Are the shops owned in Town by Caymanians?


    Like I said, I don't get it so any enlightenment is appreciated.



    • Anonymous says:

      Royal Caribbean operates the larger ships like Oasis and Genesis class ships, which carry the wealthier passengers.  Carnival carries the smaller ships and the cheaper-end passengers.  So yes, not having cruise ship berthing facilities means the wealthier passengers are bypassing us completely, to go to Jamaica and elsewhere in the Caribbean that have berthing facilities.   Get it now?

  10. village idiot of Absurdistan says:

    Instead of speculating on the condition of the cruise arrivals in the Caribbean I decided to look for some stats. I found this report that covers the first half of 2011 and it appears to dispel the argument that all of the Caribbean is down in cruise arrivals- in fact the reverse is true- please review the last page of this report.

    However, Martinique, which has a relatively new cruise dock is suffering the most – down 68% to date. No clear explanation but a couple possible ones may be that the new dock does not handle the new mega class of ships, or other external forces such as crime may have driven the ships away. Pure speculation on my part and further investigation is required. 

    Jamaica is certainly up year to date, as are many of the other big players in the Caribbean:

    USVI- increase

    Bahamas- increase

    Aruba- increase

    St.Maarten- increase

    I wanted to provide some real data to the debate to show that the entire Caribbean is not suffering and their is likley merit to Tricia and Brynley's argument.

    I am still undecided (uneducated) at what the magic number of cruise guests for Cayman (1 million perhaps?) for an ideal mix with stay over guests, I wait with baited breath for Big Macs next shot gun announcement on the topic.



    • Anonymous says:

      Already out on Caycompass – his Premiership is proceeding with CHEC; hopes to have Cabinet approval in Nov with construction beginning in December.

      • Anonymous says:

        Yeah, and come December, there will be yet another reason given for more delays.  So forgive me when I say I don't believe it.

        • Anonymous says:

          Well yes, it'll take awhile for the containers full of Chinese workers to arrive.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Our MLAs only have 3 fundamental economic cornerstones of our economy they must protect & nurture at all costs – cruise tourism, stayover tourism and offshore finance.

    If we elected a blind man on a galloping horse to represent West Bay he'd do a better job protecting our cruise tourism industry. The current port is only, what, 5 years old and is a design joke amongst the whole cruise industry – just ask anyone in the DoT or CITA. Tatty, chaotic, cheap, shade-unfriendly, the kind of harrassment that is unthinkable on the beach. The real utter sadness is so many Caymanians depend on cruise tourism., It's such an avoidable mess we are in due purely to political incompetence and interference.

    And can anyone tell me the purpose of CITA, as it is completely ignored by He Who Must Take All Decisions?


  12. Anonymous says:

    Has anyone actually been on a cruise when you dock at a port?


    It takes you just as long to get off the boat and walk along the dock and get through the buildings (immigration, customs and shops) as it does to take a tender.


    This will not make anything better for a guest experience, it will make it worse as they don't get a free boat ride!

    Not only that but there will be no more tours in the Hog Sty Bay area .. no more cheese burger reef, no more Eden Rock or Devils Grotto, maybe even Sunset House Reef will get ruined.

    No more Wreck of the Cali or Balboa .. all of which thousands of people pay good money to go and see each week.


    But sure .. keep going on about how you need to build a dock .. a dock that will not change any cruise lines mind about where they want to go .. they have already made their schedules for years to come.


    However if you put that money into stay over tourism you would find you will thrive for many more years to come. There are hundreds of Condos left empty along seven mile beach, and stay over visitors spend a lot more money on island than cruise guests.


    Who wants to be a winner ?

    • Anonymous says:

      This post is almost total nonsense. I have been on cruises all around the Caribbean and it is significantly easier to walk off onto a dock- you get off and on when you want.. Additionally more elderly are cruising and they simply cannot risk a broken hip getting into those rocking tenders out off the drop off there.

      However I agree with you that Hog Sty Bay is not the place. Red Bay is the best idea I have seen so far. Gets rid of traffic and will be easy to build in that shallow water, probably quicker and definately cheaper too. It will leave your Cali, balboa and cheeseburger reef intact and disperse traffic.

      Regarding condos…..they were the ruination of our overnight tourism industry. Did well for the realtors but 90% the time they are locked up empty. The owners even bring their own food sometimes. Call for a pizza every now and then and put up “private beach” signs every month. They have used up our best beach as residential leaving us searching for a good hotel site. Condos?…do get me started!

    • Anonymous says:

      What you have posted makes no sense.  It takes LONGER for people to get onshore when tendering from sea rather than walking onto a dock.  For sure the cruise lines make up their schedules for years ahead, any business that is forward thinking and plans ahead does exactly that.  The point is, for 20 YEARS Cayman has been discussing a proper dock facility, and because they cannot get one going, the cruise lines, especially the larger ones under Royal Caribbean who carry the wealty passengers, are going elsewhere, like Jamaica, for one, while completely bypassing Cayman.   The cruise lines offered to help Cayman build it in the past, and Cayman did not jump on it.   So the cruise lines are now sending their passengers to destinations that offer a better visitor experience, and whether you like to admit it or not, when a ship comes and anchors out there, not ALL the passengers will come off, a good number of them are elderly and will not risk a hip fracture or broken leg as has happened before while trying to get onto a tender.  Much of the Cruise staff are also not going to come off as they do in other destinations.  

  13. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Davies said that the cruise schedules are planned two to three years out, and he is giving the excuse that Cayman's current downturn is due to the fact  it has no piers.  Well Mr. Davies and Ms. Trina should look on the Port's website and count the calls for next year and sum the capacities of the ships calling, then explain why there are over 600 scheduled cruise ship calls to Grand Cayman for next year with a total capacity of over 1.7 million passengers.  Perhaps you all should speak with someone like Mr. Woods at the Port who would be able to give you an honest answer about the fluctuations in the cruise market.

    • Anonymous says:

      I can bet you that not all 1.7M passengers get off the ship – a number of them are elderly and do not want to risk a leg or hip fracture trying to get onto one of the tenders.   So just quoting capacity numbers do not prove a thing.

      • Anonymous says:

        The numbers still show a roughly 20% increase on FORECAST arrivals over this year.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Is there a link to the plan of the cruise ship proposed in front of Hurleys?

  15. Anonymous says:

    This is a timely news topic as the caymanian seaman are not pushing for the dock to be in the Eastern end of South Sound.  As it is clear cruise ships are so badly needed, why don't we get something going?

    • Anonymous says:

      The old seamen are not pushing for it. Choppy Delaphena is pushing for it. These captains had the idea decades ago – when it might have been feasible for that area – but that time has long gone. And the captains (most of them) realise the time has passed also.


  16. Anonymous says:

    I agree that the new dock should go in Red Bay, but how long will it take to get THAT ball rolling.  Will they be able to start that quicker than the ones in town with everything in mind?

  17. Anonymous says:

    The problem is a party makes a plan and starts the  planning process with a developer, and as soon as the next party comes into power, it scraps the plan and starts over again with a new plan / developer, because it wants the credit for itself.   They wouldn't dare dream of completing an idea that originated with the other party – that would mean having to share the credits with them.  Also, too many political cronies wants a share of the pie, what they can get out of it, and too many consultants wanting excessive "consultancy fees."   That is why the port is not yet built.

  18. anonymous says:

    When are you all going to wake up and see that any more than 4 ships a day is all that we can handle comfortably.I am all for a dock so get on with it but bear in mind that wherever it is located not everyone will be satisfied or happy.We cant please everyone so lets stop all this BS ing and get on with the dock already.Hopefully we will only allow the amount of ships to fillthat dock(maximum 4) and not squeeze in a few more on anchor further down the bay somewhere so as to fullfill the greed of some.Get real people we cannot handle any more than 4 a day unless we wish to really chase even more tourists away with crowded conditions Georgetown(harbour drive)needs to be closed off and allow one way traffic only(going north)and at the same time the area needs to be made far more tourist friendly..Our day trippers to the sand bar etc.are not being paid a proper fee for this trip hence the continued overloading of boats and more complaints about how much like a Chineese fire drill these trips are(not all)These guys should be getting at least US$50 per person and this will keep the numbers to a more manageable level and give everyone a much more enjoyable trip.This is where you will get more stayover visitors from.Our govt needs to be firm in their dealings with the cruise ship industry after all we have a product that they all want so they should be paying more for it and not become like a fast food outlet.People have to remember that is was the stay over visitors who put Cayman tourism product where it is today and we need to find a happy balance between the two types of visitors.We need both but one has to be kept under control(cruisers)so as not to swamp the island with too many people at any one time.We must work together on this so as to make our tourism a sustainable product for all to enjoy.

  19. Cruise insider says:

    This argument about cruise tourism and the dock is complete BS.

    Cruise itineraries are tailored to maximise revenue generation and minimise costs. You cannot do that with the current oil prices and pricing structures by including somewhere in an out of the way location like the Cayman Islands, particularly when we are now within possibly 2-3 years of Cuba opening up to US tourists.

    There is also a passenger-fatigue issue within a finite and decreasing customer base, they just don't want to continually re-visit the same destination. The big cruise lines, run by hard-headed businessmen, have realised that and simply moved on. In simple terms, the well has run dry.

    CITA need to get their act together and start moving forwards into the stayover, all-inclusive hotel-based market rather than looking at what has passed and trying to resurrect it.

    Cayman made good money out of the peak of the cruise ship trade but CITA, despite the fact that tourism is a volatile industry, failed to make any contingency plans for what might happen if that business moved elsewhere and just about everyone involved (particularly the dive industry who abandoned their traditional customer base for a fast buck) failed to properly re-invest the proceeds into sustainable tourism.

    The cruise crisis is nothing to do with the dock – it's all about lack of professional tourism management and lack of foresight.

  20. Anonymous says:

    The dock should have been started well before now.  By the time they get organised and build it the cruise lines will have well established routes that don't include Cayman, and it will be hard to get them back.

    It's not just the dock either, serious work needs to be done to improve the experience of cruise shippers once they come ashore.

    Would be great if the new economic zone exempted businesses from the local companies control law so we could get some proper international brands and stores established here.

    • Anonymous says:

      Companies in the proposed economic zone will not be allowed to set up direct trade / commercial activity here i.e. retail, etc.  

    • Anonymous says:

      The same international brands that are everywhere else?

    • Anonymous says:

      Thanks again Mckeeva Bush, you promised so much but have delivered so little. If it wasn't for your greed & selfishness there would be the new dock & berthing facilities in place, & cruise tourism would be good. But because of you & your delays (AGAIN) businesses & the people are suffering. Do you care?

      • Anonymous says:

        That'sright.  While Rome been burning, Nero been wiffle waffling.  More than 60 business closed in the last couple of years while these politicians wiffle waffle because they all holding out to see which developer can give them and their cronies a greater share of the pie – self above country, that is the true motto of today's politicians.  To see Caymania Duty Free, a caymanian owned business, going out of business because of the current situation, not to mention the many other companies that closed before them, is a crying shame. How it is that the people of this country sit back and let these things happen, is beyond me.  Full of talk but no fire in their bellies, and that is exactly why politicians are allowed to get away with their shameful behaviour. 

  21. Anonymous says:

    Well, we know the Premier has chosen to Chinese to build the port facility.  And we know the Premier doesn't give a rat's ass about the bureacracy of Enivironmental Impact Statements, Public Tendering, and all those things which might delay the construction.

    So what exactly is the delay?

    • Anonymous says:

      Maybe it has something to do with preparing the new immigration laws for longer term work permits for the Chinese employees and Dr. Shetty's employees…..he is trying to rush it through now….

    • Anonymous says:

      Perhaps the financial arrangements have not been  completed.

    • Anonymous says:

      Maybe things would go ahead more quickly if that darn Auditor General stopped poking around.

  22. Anonymous says:

    So, cruise shipper arrivals are down for Grand Cayman…I wonder at what level cruise arrivals are down for other countries with and without cruise berthing facilities? 

    Cayman's cruise product has improved over the last 10 years – much more streamlined and efficient despite no "dock".  I wonder why the industry is so keen for Cayman to build a dock?  If cruise arrivals are down around the Caribbean that to me would suggest the economy is preventing people traveling, like in every other travel industry. 

    As usual, I feel we only have one side of the story. 

    • Anonymous says:

      conspiracies are great…but the hard facts are that the cruise industry is booming and cayman is being left behind….YR against YR cruise statistics in Caribbean are easily attainable if you google for them…..Bahamas UP 13% first 6 months this year/St Martin UP 20% in 1st 3 months this year/Jamaica UP 14% first 6 months/etc, etc….Cayman needs a dock, its guest experience is shockingly poor, and the FCCA have repeatedly told Cayman and other ports that up to 50% of cruise passengers seek to return as stayover guests based on their experiences……imagine if 50% of caymans cruise passengers wanted to come back for a longer stay……the trickle down would be huge into the economy over coming years….but it will never happen if we're continually blocked by corruption, greed, naivety and lack of foresight…unfortunately, we seem to excel in all of these things…..

      • Anonymous says:

        Cayman was also up for the first 3 months of the year.  What has happened to those other locations through the lower summer months?

    • Anonymous says:

      YOu want to know the other side of the story?  Here goes – they are ALL going to Jamaica and elsewhere in the Caribbean where they can actually dock, and bypassing Cayman.

    • KaptainKayman says:

      Scroll down to Table 4 for cruise ship visitors by Caribbean/Atlantic island.  Cayman is seeing the biggest drop of the major ports (not that I mind).

  23. B.B.L. Brown says:

    I must be the only person that DOESN'T want to see tourism running the Cayman Islands.  I don't like all the problems caused by untold numbers of tourists jamming the streets and beaches.  No….. I don't like gridlock.  I don't want to live where I'm elbow-to-elbow with others.  Perhaps if I were getting rich from hordes of tourists I would feel different…… then I could get rich and go somewhere that qualifies as a quiet peaceful Caribbean island.

  24. Anonymous says:

    The cruise hasn't happened yet because there has never been a consensus.  It is time we listen to the Captains and general population and put the dock in Red Bay.  End of Story.

    • Anonymous says:

      It really is the end of the story:  cruise ship passengers will come off the dock at Red Bay, see a big wide expanse of nothing except a bus and taxi queue, think "WTF?" and walk back on board.  Requiring passengers to tender by bus to George Town is worse than tendering them by, well, tenders, from cruise ships moored off George Town.

      In addition, I'd rather listen to industry and environmental experts than the general public, if it's all the same.

      • Anonymous says:

        Nonsense – why don't you engage brain before you put mouth into gear?  Can you imagine the logistics nightmare of trying to move THOUSANDS of passengers off 4 or 5 ships all over the island, the buses, and taxis can only handle a certain amount in a certain time, you would have LONG lines of people waiting just to queue up and get onto a bus or taxi to get around. Not to mention the additional cost of creating a bus / taxi depot in this area just to be able to handle the movement of people.   If it is kept in George Town, they can walk straight into the shops, restaurants, bars, and those who want to tour, can go on a pre-arranged tour.     George Town already has the relevant infrastructure in place.  George Town harbour has already been damaged by the existing facilities, so why not just keep the dock there, rather than go damage another pristine environment and create a HUGe environmental impact that will be caused by the large amount of dredging that will have to take place, not to mention causing a shift in the current wave patterns and sand deposits and the negative environmental impact it will have.  Not today bobo.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Way to go McKeeva. We had a deal basically set in stone to build the crusie terminal and he binned it claiming there was a better deal on the horizon. What happended to that better deal? Why have we heard nothing?

    What is going to be his next great idea to make up for lost revenue due to less cruise ships coming here over the next 4 or 5 yrs?

    I am glad I dont work in the tourism industry.

  26. Anonymous says:

    Cayman Airways should pursue a code share with COPA and look to connect with South America and the world via Panama.  We are missing the boat on our proximity to the Tocumen International hub, in favour of what other failing route?  Honduras?  Are you kidding me?  

  27. Anonymous says:

    Again, the berthing issue assumes there are paying passengers, which in statistical reality are in very short supply across this entire region, even with outrageous cruise line inducements.  Some of these overextended cruise lines that are barking at us over capacity issues will be bankrupt within the year.  I mean, are people really so blind or out of touch that they can't see what's going on in the world right now?    

    • Anonymous says:

      We display our superior intelligence by not building a port because there are fewer passengers. In contrast, our competitors are building ports and reporting increased passengers.  Any correlation between effort and results?

      • Anonymous says:

        The Genesis class ports have incurred tens of millions, if not hundreds of millions in added costs for low double digit increase in daytime arrival traffic.   

  28. Common Sense says:

    What did you THINK was gonna happen?  We were TOLD this would happen and we stuck our turtle heads in the sand and hope that our glorious little island would be too good to pass up by the big cruise ships?  Wrong!

    Here is a newsflash that is a decade old!  We ONLY needed a damn pier, a simple long concrete pier!  The cruise tourists LOVE Cayman, but hate the tenders and it is a logisitical pain in the butt for the ships….so they land where they can, and wait for it :  "dock there and let passengers off".

    Our OWN politicians scuppered these chances!  They bickered and pouted and planned.

     They could not figure out how to divide up the pie so they did nothing.  Instead of digging placing some post and beams and pouring cement (estimate total project cost less than USD$10 million) see:   our greedy politicians signed MOUs here and there, bickered about retail and licenses, rent rates, who owned the land, on and on and on…..While the ships passed us by!

    And for those of you who say, "good" we only like stay-over tourists.  You are wrong.  A lot of stayover tourists come from the word of mouth of these cruisers.  And wealthy cruisers turn into snowbird condo-owners.

    Just pour the damn cement and build your retails shops afterwards….

    The ships only want a place to let off their passengers.  They offer all their own retail onboard.  Let the tourists come.  

    UDP and PPM (I HATE the two party system of blame the other guy) you BOTH dropped the ball on this one.  Greed superseeded common sense once again.  Good going turtle heads.

    • Anonymous says:

      Screw the cruise ships.

      • Anonymous says:

        15.22. What is your line of business? Should we 'screw that', too?"

    • Anonymous says:

      9.35.Common Sense, how right you are! I get exceedingly hot under the collar when I see teenage tit-for-tat murderers hijacking the hard-won reputation our little country, but I don't get any less angry when I see those in control betray their people by putting themselves first. I reckon each gunman recently has cost the island $10 million in lost revenues, but our Governments have shafted us with losses into the 100's of millions over the past ten years. It's inexcusable, but it just goes on and on, as they're 'only' spending other people's money. I heard (but I have no direct proof) that GLF was ready to start work on the piers two months ago, so I presume the lawsuits will have to be settled between them and our Government before the Chinese can move forward, which I hear will probably be in about 18 months time. I don't mind suffering for things outside our country's control, alongside everyone else, but I do object to being deliberately tipped into the sh*t, along with the entire downtown retail industry.

      • Anonymous says:

        How right you are.  Only 1 correction, GLF was ready to start 5 months ago, not two.