Truesee's Daily Wonder

Truesee presents the weird, wild, wacky and world news of the day.

Sunday, May 3, 2009


Swine Flu Fears Cruise Ships Skip Mexico Adding Dollars to Alternate Ports


Cruise Ship Diversions From Mexico Adding Dollars to Alternate Ports

May 3, 2009 5:25 p.m. EST


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Melvin Baker - AHN Reporter
San Francisco, CA (AHN) - Vacationers who booked cruises to Mexico have recently seen their itineraries suddenly changed by the outbreak of swine flu in that country. The result has been a sudden and unexpected boom in tourism dollars in substitute destinations.

On Friday, 3,000 passengers came down the gangway of the cruise ship Carnival Splendor. But they didn't set foot on Mexican soil, which was where they were supposed to be. Rather, fears of catching the swine flu had forced the ship to change course and head back across the border to San Francisco.

Cruise lines around the United States are yanking their              advertised stops to Mexican ports, penciling alternative ports of call as precautions against a disease for which 787 cases have now been reported around the globe. Of those cases, 506 have been reported in Mexico.

On April 29, Carnival announced that it had cancelled all stops in Mexican ports until Monday. The company was searching for alternative stops and was offering the option of rescheduling cruises for a future date.

On Saturday, Royal Caribbean cruise line said it had suspended trips departing from South Florida to Cozumel by four of its ships and would instead spend additional time in Key West, the Bahamas, or Jamaica and add another day at sea. Cruises leaving from Los Angeles have a "fully revised itinerary," according to a company statement, which includes stops along the West Coast and Canada.

The revised itinerary includes a notice to passengers that "the weather on the revised itinerary is considerably colder. Guests should remember to pack clothing that is appropriate for this new itinerary."

While these changes may be disappointing to cruise travelers, they can be a boon to local merchants not accustomed to the heavier tourist traffic. In San Francisco, each cruise ship accounts for about $1 million spent at shops and businesses, notes television station KGO. And the number of cruise ships scheduled to stop there has doubled, from nine to 18.



Feature: Swine Flu A Boon To Key West Cruise Tourism

May 3, 2009 3:36 p.m. EST


David Goodhue - AHN Reporter

Miami, FL (AHN) - Key West is seeing a silver lining in the swine flu scare.

The Southernmost City is reaping about $400,000 in extra disembarkation fees from cruise ships that were destined for ports of call in Mexico, but changed destinations because of the H1N1 virus.

"There is an increase in ships being rerouted to Key West," said Alyson Crean, a spokeswoman for the city. "We're receiving about 19 extra calls this month."

The amount of money the city charges ships to dock in Key West varies depending upon the size of the vessel, but Crean said an average of about $20,000 goes into the city's coffers from each ship. City business will also likely see a bump in income in May from all the passengers that disembark from the extra ships.

Carnival Cruise Lines, which has ships that stop off in Key West, has modified all trips that began April 30 through May 11 that include stops in Mexico, Joyce Oliva, a spokeswoman with the company said.

"Guests who do not wish to sail on a modified itinerary may opt to receive a refund in the form of a future cruise credit equal to the full amount paid for the voyage," Carnival said in a statement.

The credit is good for any trip departing through 2010, Oliva said.

Five Carnival ships destined for Mexico will stop off in Key West instead of the original port of call, Cozumel.

More ships could be on their way if the situation stays dire for Mexico, where the virus has claimed the lives of at least 19 people. Oliva said that for passengers on ships scheduled to leave after May 11, an update will be provided soon.

Being prepared

But being a tourist destination also carries with it risks when dealing with an infectious illness like the swine flu. Any one of the thousands of tourists who visit the Keys, could be introducing the virus to the popuuulaaatiooon. There have been no confirmed cases of H1N1 in the Keys, but local county and school district officials are on guard.

"It is our belief that prevention will be the best defense against this illness," Sunny Booker, the Monroe County School District's safe schools coordinator said in a statement.

The district announced a list of procedures it is taking to try to prevent the virus from impacting students and teachers. Chief among the efforts is to encourage hand washing.

Each teacher will receive a supply of hand soap for their classrooms. Elementary and middle school students will be encouraged t0o build in hand-washing breaks throughout the school day.

Posters will be hung throughout the schools reminding students and staff the importance of good hygiene. Custodians are being instructed to "vigorously wipe down all door handles and desks and other surfaces each night with specialized cleansers."

The school district is also telling its students that if they feel sick, they should stay home. Symptoms of swine flu are similar to those of typical flu viruses, but the district does not want to take chances.

Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home


January 2021   December 2020   November 2020   October 2020   September 2020   August 2020   July 2020   June 2020   May 2020   April 2020   March 2020   February 2020   January 2020   December 2019   November 2019   October 2019   September 2019   August 2019   July 2019   June 2019   May 2019   April 2019   March 2019   February 2019   January 2019   December 2018   November 2018   October 2018   September 2018   August 2018   July 2018   June 2018   May 2018   April 2018   March 2018   February 2018   January 2018   December 2017   November 2017   October 2017   September 2017   August 2017   July 2017   June 2017   May 2017   April 2017   March 2017   February 2017   January 2017   December 2016   November 2016   October 2016   September 2016   August 2016   July 2016   June 2016   May 2016   April 2016   March 2016   February 2016   January 2016   December 2015   November 2015   October 2015   September 2015   August 2015   July 2015   June 2015   May 2015   April 2015   March 2015   February 2015   January 2015   December 2014   November 2014   October 2014   September 2014   August 2014   July 2014   June 2014   May 2014   April 2014   March 2014   February 2014   January 2014   December 2013   November 2013   October 2013   September 2013   August 2013   July 2013   June 2013   May 2013   April 2013   March 2013   February 2013   January 2013   December 2012   November 2012   October 2012   September 2012   August 2012   July 2012   June 2012   May 2012   April 2012   March 2012   February 2012   January 2012   December 2011   November 2011   October 2011   September 2011   August 2011   July 2011   June 2011   May 2011   April 2011   March 2011   February 2011   January 2011   December 2010   November 2010   October 2010   September 2010   August 2010   July 2010   June 2010   May 2010   April 2010   March 2010   February 2010   January 2010   December 2009   November 2009   October 2009   September 2009   August 2009   July 2009   June 2009   May 2009   April 2009   March 2009   February 2009   January 2009   December 2008  

Powered by Lottery PostSyndicated RSS FeedSubscribe