U.S. Virgin Island officials and Florida-Caribbean Cruise
Association executives met recently to address the issue of cruise
safety, but meanwhile, at least four U.S.-based cruise lines have
pulled ships from calls at St. Croix.
New cruise port safety measures under implementation by U.S.V.I.
tourism officials will include increased police presence and
surveillance dock-area cameras in Frederiksted, and increased
advertising and incentive programs focusing on St. Croix, said
Henry “Skip” de Lagarde, the U.S.V.I. Department of Tourism’s North
American general manager.
In mid-July, Holland America announced cancellation of three St.
Croix port calls by its new Zuiderdam ship during the upcoming
2002/2003 Caribbean season. Carnival Cruise Lines, Norwegian Cruise
Line and Windstar Cruises also have canceled St. Croix calls.
Carnival Cruise Lines canceled 52 port calls by its Triumph and
Victory vessels, while Norwegian Cruise Line substituted a stop in
“Each (FCCA) member line monitors the ports where they bring
their most precious cargo their passengers and therefore each line
from time to time makes operational decisions to add or eliminate
ports of call,” FCCA President Michele Paige told TravelAge
FCCA members “asked us to generate additional demand for St.
Croix,” de Lagarde said. “Cruise business is driven by demand, and
they want us to create additional demand for St. Croix and to
assure visitor safety.”
From May 2001 to May of this year, the destination posted an
8.9% decline in cruise passengers.