The Bahamas Wants Travelers to Know It’s Open for Business

by Jessica Montevago
The Bahamas Wants Travelers to Know It’s Open for Business

Photo: Bahamas Hotel & Tourism Association


As restoration and rebuilding efforts are underway for Grand Bahama and Abaco Islands, Bahamian officials are reminding the public that there are 14 other islands that are ready to welcome tourists.

While the catastrophic storm cannot be understated – at least 45 people died and hundreds are still missing – tourism to the unaffected islands can bring in needed funds to help those in need.

"One of the best ways that people around the world can show their support and solidarity ... is to visit our other islands by air or by cruise ship," the Bahamas Prime Minister Hubert Minnis said.

The Bahamas depend heavily on tourism, which supplies half of their annual gross domestic product of $5.7 billion, according to the Bahamas Investment Authority.

Some of the most popular resorts on the 700-island chain — like Atlantis, Paradise Island and Baha Mar (which includes Grand Hyatt, SLS and Rosewood properties) — were unscathed. All-inclusive hotels Warwick Paradise Island and Sandals Royal Bahamian, and boutique hotels in the Out Islands like Cat Island and Bimini, were also unaffected.

"There are no words to convey the grief we feel for our fellow Bahamians in The Abacos and Grand Bahama," said the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation Minister Dionisio D'Aguilar. "Now is the time to come together for our brothers and sisters in need, and help our country get back on its feet. Anyone who wishes to provide relief support should go to www.bahamas.com/relief for verified ways to help. We also implore travelers to continue visiting the Bahamian islands that were not impacted by Hurricane Dorian, as this will help our people tremendously."

On Abacos and Grand Bahama Island (the two islands in the Northwest Bahamas that were devastated by Hurricane Dorian), many smaller hotels and vacation rentals were damaged or destroyed. The Ministry of Tourism confirmed last week that all hotels on Abaco and Grand Bahama are closed.

Together, the islands have about 3,000 hotel rooms, or 19% of the 16,000 rooms in the Bahamas, according to Frank Comito, CEO of the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association. They also have hundreds of vacation homes. Airbnb lists more than 600 rentals for Grand Bahama and the Abacos islands.

The Abaco Club on Winding Bay said it “weathered Hurricane Dorian relatively well,” and is currently acting to provide urgent and immediate assistance to the people of Great Abaco Island. Green Turtle Club Resort and Marina, too, is focusing on raising funds via The Green Turtle Foundation GoFundMe.

The owners of Pelican Beach Villas said their oceanfront cottages near Marsh Harbour were completely destroyed and they were evacuated to Nassau by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers. Firefly Resort Abaco tweeted photos of downed trees and a building with no roof and a collapsed wall.

Grand Lucayan (the largest resort on Grand Bahama Island) and the Viva Wyndham Fortuna Beach are closed.

Many Hurricane Dorian Bahamas relief efforts are underway. For information on how to help, go to www.bahamas.com/relief.

  1
  0
TMR Recommendations
Top Stories
Airline Ticket Prices Reached Record Low This Month

Now is the perfect time to book your client's next vacation, as October airfares are the cheapest they have been in six years, according to The Consumer Airfare Index.

Canada Warns Travelers to Exercise Caution with High-Pressure Timeshare Sales

The Government of Canada reminds travelers to do their homework when considering buying a timeshare in Mexico.

Top 10 Spookiest American Towns to Visit for Halloween

Whether you’re looking for haunted houses, freaky festivals, or other spooky spots, here are the best locations for Halloween travelers.

Venice's Tourism Tax Will Start Next Year

In an effort to curtail the effects of overtourism, Venice’s tourism tax will be used to offset the high charges locals pay for public services.

Portugal Sees Record Increase in Visitors from the U.S.

Travelers are expanding beyond the traditional hot spots of Lisbon and the Algarve to explore the Douro Valley in the North, and other less-developed areas like the Azores archipelago.

U.S. to Waive Visa Requirements for Polish Citizens

The move will make it easier for polish travelers to visit the U.S. for business and tourism purposes.

News Briefs
Tip of the Day

"The travel industry is ever-growing and ever-changing. You want someone who keeps updated on all of its trends, as well as its travails, and can offer you handcrafted, personalized and professional service all the way from the moment of a trip’s inspiration to the journey’s end."

Mary Ann Anderson

Forbes

Daily Top List

Oldest Castles in England

  1. Berkhamsted Castle
  2. Norwich Castle
  3. Warwick Castle
  4. Lincoln Castle

Source: World Atlas

TMR Outlooks