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15 miles from Labadee !!!!


aprilfool

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My point was that if Labadee were to become unstable then RCL would have to find another port. Weather / "waves" are a little different than anticipating a problem on an island that just had a Major Natural Disaster where THOUSANDS of people have just perished! They have a responsibility to anticipate and develop a game plan if issues were to arise on Hatti. Just to say “oh well it will have to be another day at sea”, is NOT an acceptable response to this situation! And I’m sure anyone else that is on my cruise would think the same way!

 

Nevertheless......

 

The contract to which you agreed clearly states they can change itineraries at any time, for any reason, without notice......

 

Acceptable or not...you agreed to it.

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Maggie... great points.

 

 

 

FYI... Haiti was subject to poverty and extremely poor standards for years and now, even with the millions and millions of dollars in aid from countries all over the world, it will take years for the country to recover.

 

Why should RCI take the brunt. RCI is doing its part- donating money, transporting supplies, paying port taxes. What more can one expect?

 

Did we cancel our travel plans when Katrina ravaged New Orleans and the gulf coast?

 

I just don't understand. Tragedies happen around the world... does it matter if the tragedy was 100 miles or 1000 miles away before feelings of guilt disappear?

 

Ah, I get it now....

 

"Let them eat cake".....

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A lot of posters on this, and other threads, seem to take the stand that they should not be enjoying themselves when there is such devastation and loss of life 100 miles away, But, those same people would have no problem enjoying themselves if the Labadee stop was changed to a sea day, and the same devastation and loss of life was 120 miles away:confused:.

 

The same goes for Jamaica, 341 miles from Labadee, are people going to be laying on the Beach, climbing Dunns River falls and drinking to excess at margaritaville?, I'm sure they are. Ah, but there aren't 100,000 dead in Jamaica...nor are people dying by the hundreds every day from lack of food, water and medical care.

 

What is the acceptable distance, that people can be away form the disaster area and relax and enjoy their vacation.

 

Ships calling at Labadee, help the Haitian workers employed there and their familes and extended families, the goods that RCI is bringing to Labadee are being distributed right away to the people that need them, the financial donation from the sales at Labadee is helping the people of Haiti. Ships can easily provide whatever they can without the orgy of food, water and fun on the beach......

 

The results of the earthquake and subsequent loss of life and even poorer living conditions for the Haitian people is horrendous, lets not make it even worse by denying them the help that RCI and it's passengers and suppliers are willing to give.

 

The government of Haiti wants the ships visit to continue, so let RCI give them what they want, as well and what they need.

 

It's the government of Haiti that has contributed to the misery. A century of corruption is what made this island and it's people so vulnerable to such a disaster. The government doesn't care about "the people"..never have and never will.

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Would you have enjoyed your resort stay if a hundred thousand people were dead nearby - and hundreds were dying everyday for lack of the basic necessities of food' date=' water and medical care?[/quote']

 

I will. There is not much I can do besides give money. Every day around the world there are thousands of people dying due to the lack of food, water, and medicine. Their suffering doesn't stop me from enjoying myself while on vacation.

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Just a heads up here -- we're working on a Haiti news update for later this afternoon and we asked Royal Caribbean, is the rumor that you'll divert ships from Haiti true? The answer, from Cynthia Martinez, a company spokeswoman, is below:

 

"The rumor is incorrect. We have not altered any itineraries. Actually, we're loading supplies on all our ships heading to Haiti. Navigator arrived today with approximately 80 pallets, and more will arrive tomorrow on Liberty of the Seas."

 

Carolyn Spencer Brown

Editor in Chief

Cruise Critic

 

 

We can only hope this is true. It's exactly the right thing to do.
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Sure wish I was on a cruise scheduled to stop in Labadee in the next 2 weeks!!!! With so many people from PoP headed north to Cap Haitian looking for food, shelter, and water it seems that the passengers have even a much better chance to contribute than before. First off, everyone gets off the ship and heads to the market and buys a trinket at an outrageous price. And add a few dollars to the price. Then tip someone on the beach for carrying their bag. It has been reported that food that is not eaten by the passengers is taken home by the Haitians working at Labadee. So passengers - don't eat while on Labadee. Have a big breakfast, head back to the ship for a slice of pizza for lunch, and enjoy your dinner on board. Leave the food that is prepared at Labadee for your enjoyment to be taken by the Haitians. Some of it will find it's way to the shelters. You can do without it. Also, leave a few unopen bottles of water with the Haitians. And if you are on a cruise that RCI is donating profits from that stop to charity, well buy an excursion. You don't have to go on it, just buy it. Or donate that money to one of the charities that are helping out.

Honestly, you can get off the ship, contribute, and have a subdued day.

I also would probably leave several pair of brand new pairs of flip flops on the beach. Not to mention a few new t-shirts and whatever. New and unused.

 

 

And take a couple of cases of bottled water yourself and leave it behind.

 

I had immediate bad feelings with RCI for their decision to continue with their stop in Haiti, but after careful consideration I have changed my mind. PoP is devastated by what has happened. RCI could devastate the economy of Labadee by deciding to not stop there. Then Haiti would be doubley devastated. These are very poor people and they need tourism. The cruise line has contributed millions to their economy and donated a $1 mill to the relief effort already plus the profits of the Labadee stop. Cruise passengers going to Labadee have a front line opportunity to help that those of us stuck stateside in the snowbound midwest cannot (except with a checkbook). I would feel better knowing that clothing, bandaids and shoes were actually in Haiti than ASSUMING that my donation was being used for them.

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I thought it was in poor taste to return so soon, but then I did some checking on the distance between Labadee and the quake area. Also that RCI was bringing in humanitarian aid and food on every ship that docks there.

 

As far as safety, several reports in the newspapers online and CNN state that the area has a 12 foot fence with armed guards along the perimeter.

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Yes, it is tragic what has happened in Haiti, and I feel very bad for the people there. However, there is tragedy that happens all over the world all the time. There is extreme poverty in many places too. That should not stop anyone from going on vacation and enjoying themself. RCCL has done the right thing, in my opinion, with continuing to call on Labadee. The Haitian government wants it to continue, so it should. Plus, as many people have pointed out, passengers from cruise ships have an opportunity to bless the Haitian people by putting money directly into their hands to help purchase food, water, and other basic necessities. Passengers can also bless them by just being friendly, kind, caring, and empathetic. The Haitians need some joy in their lives. The cruise ship passengers should take it upon themselves to inject a little bit of that into the lives of each Haitian they come into contact with while off the ship. If I were in the shoes of the Haitian people, I would want the cruise ships to continue to call on my country as opposed to just passing us by. Life has to go on...

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Would you have enjoyed your resort stay if a hundred thousand people were dead nearby - and hundreds were dying everyday for lack of the basic necessities of food' date=' water and medical care?[/quote']

 

 

The universe moves on no matter what. There are funerals every day, all over the world, and right next door, you may have birthday parties and weddings where people are celebrating.

 

We have to help those in need how we can. Staying away will not help, it will only make the situation worse. Fretting will not help the Haitian people. Money and supplies will.

 

Keep those in need in your thoughts, and donate as much as you are comfortable with. But enjoy your life...enjoy your cruise...enjoy Labadee. Every moment is precious.

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Would you have enjoyed your resort stay if a hundred thousand people were dead nearby - and hundreds were dying everyday for lack of the basic necessities of food' date=' water and medical care?[/quote']

 

You can only do what you can do. I give food and money to the food bank, donate to the local hospital, my kids do community service, I donate to Kiva (check it out), I sponsor an African child, and then I have to live my life.

 

The situation in Haiti does bother me but it bothered me back in July when I saw kids on the hillside, behind the chain link fence, begging for food. What does one do?

 

Do you stop traveling, having parties, and being happy? Because listen to me, people all over the world are dying, and starving, and being abused, and there is no end in sight. You have to do your part and then live your life.

 

Holier than thous really don't impress me.

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I would not be surprised if they start using the docks at Labadee for supplies to get in. I'm sure that if asked, RCCL would gladly do it. Realize that is 100 miles...

 

I'm not sure of the logistics but it might make sense to get to the other villages or areas that more is needed. I'm sure that they have looked at it.

 

I would be surprised if they did that because there is not a very good road to the rest of the area. They would be better off sending supply tenders directly to the piers at Cap Haitian.

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You can only do what you can do. I give food and money to the food bank, donate to the local hospital, my kids do community service, I donate to Kiva (check it out), I sponsor an African child, and then I have to live my life.

 

The situation in Haiti does bother me but it bothered me back in July when I saw kids on the hillside, behind the chain link fence, begging for food. What does one do?

 

Do you stop traveling, having parties, and being happy? Because listen to me, people all over the world are dying, and starving, and being abused, and there is no end in sight. You have to do your part and then live your life.

 

Holier than thous really don't impress me.

 

Great post.

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Big whoopee doo that RC employs 230 Haitians. Thats nothing compared to the thousands and thousands of dollars that they make everytime the ship stops there. 300 more employed in the market place..I cant see that, there were not that many booths. If RC really is donating ALOT of relief supplies then let them stop. But we dont know exactly what they are offloading. If they would let passengets bring donations to leave there with a responsible party that would distribute it to the earthquake areas then let them stop there. I do believe RC is taking advantage of Haiti and making a ton more money off Labadee than they are contributing. The Haitian government is so corrupt, exactly who did RC make these deals with. I doubt the population in Haiti with the exception of the 230 workers and the market vendors are benefiting from this. Yes they should make some profit but not take advantage. The people of Haiti are going to get more desperate in the weeks to come and just because RC has hired security doesnt mean you will be safe there so that might change wether they stop at Labadee or not. I can see desperate rioting if they know RC is taking supplies to shore. 55 million is alot to spend to make Labadee paradise, think what that would of bought if half of that would of been donated to the red cross instead of building an ugly cement dock or a zip line. I just think RC owes Haiti alot more than they are probably giving.

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Big whoopee doo that RC employs 230 Haitians. Thats nothing compared to the thousands and thousands of dollars that they make everytime the ship stops there. 300 more employed in the market place..I cant see that, there were not that many booths. If RC really is donating ALOT of relief supplies then let them stop. But we dont know exactly what they are offloading. If they would let passengets bring donations to leave there with a responsible party that would distribute it to the earthquake areas then let them stop there. I do believe RC is taking advantage of Haiti and making a ton more money off Labadee than they are contributing. The Haitian government is so corrupt, exactly who did RC make these deals with. I doubt the population in Haiti with the exception of the 230 workers and the market vendors are benefiting from this. Yes they should make some profit but not take advantage. The people of Haiti are going to get more desperate in the weeks to come and just because RC has hired security doesnt mean you will be safe there so that might change wether they stop at Labadee or not. I can see desperate rioting if they know RC is taking supplies to shore. 55 million is alot to spend to make Labadee paradise, think what that would of bought if half of that would of been donated to the red cross instead of building an ugly cement dock or a zip line. I just think RC owes Haiti alot more than they are probably giving.

 

Your rant was not quite legible to me, perhaps it's just me.

 

But my only thought after reading it - it must be sad being you if that is your outlook. :(

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Big whoopee doo that RC employs 230 Haitians. Thats nothing compared to the thousands and thousands of dollars that they make everytime the ship stops there. 300 more employed in the market place..I cant see that, there were not that many booths. If RC really is donating ALOT of relief supplies then let them stop. But we dont know exactly what they are offloading. If they would let passengets bring donations to leave there with a responsible party that would distribute it to the earthquake areas then let them stop there. I do believe RC is taking advantage of Haiti and making a ton more money off Labadee than they are contributing. The Haitian government is so corrupt, exactly who did RC make these deals with. I doubt the population in Haiti with the exception of the 230 workers and the market vendors are benefiting from this. Yes they should make some profit but not take advantage. The people of Haiti are going to get more desperate in the weeks to come and just because RC has hired security doesnt mean you will be safe there so that might change wether they stop at Labadee or not. I can see desperate rioting if they know RC is taking supplies to shore. 55 million is alot to spend to make Labadee paradise, think what that would of bought if half of that would of been donated to the red cross instead of building an ugly cement dock or a zip line. I just think RC owes Haiti alot more than they are probably giving.

I'm just shaking my head in disbelief. :confused: RCI leases the beach area through 2050 at a hefty sum.

 

RCI provides millions of dollars a year in port fees/revenues that Haiti would not otherwise receive.

 

RCI is using its ships to transport relief supplies.

 

RCI is donating millions to the relief fund.

 

RCI employs hundreds on Haiti.

 

Don't get me wrong, I'm not an RCI cheerleader, but I call it as I see it. The way I see it, I really don't understand where you're coming from.

 

And really, this has been beaten to death.

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I have a question for those of you that are so full of guilt and have so many issues with cruise ships stopping somewhere that has had a major natural disaster, or even stopping in countries with massive poverty. Why exactly do you cruise? If you feel so bad, stop cruising and give all your vacation money away. For that matter, how can you sleep in your nice bed in your home everynight with people around the world without beds? Where does it stop? BTW, socialism does not work and that's what a couple of posters seem to be inferring by their "guilt" posts. And, I'm not just talking about this thread, I'm referring to a couple of posters on multiple threads. I hear lots of "I can't lay on the beach while people are suffering", but these are from people who have obviously laid on other beaches at other times in countries where people are suffering. There will always be famine, war, suffering, hunger, etc. You can choose to dwell on it and feel badly all the time or you can do what you can, donate what you can and continue to vacation and spend money in countries that are entirely supported by tourism, which in the end is what will be of greater help to everyone.

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Your missing my point...no need to get rude!
tuff2 was not the only one missing your point. I have gone back and read all 5 posts you have made on this thread, and it seemed that every one of them discussed what RCI owed you and how everyone else on your cruise was as selfish as you and what RCI was going to have do to make sure that YOU were happy. Explain to me what point I missed.

 

Thom

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Your rant was not quite legible to me, perhaps it's just me.

 

But my only thought after reading it - it must be sad being you if that is your outlook. :(

 

 

Sorry if having a conscience is something you dont have. I am sad to know what Haiti is going through.

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I can't understand why people think it would be improper to go to

Labadee, but would have no problem lounging on a beach on the next island.

 

Don't you see that depriving these people of employment is the last thing we should be doing right now?!

 

Go, enjoy, and tip generously.

 

I'd rather stay away as well - I have a cruise on RC going to Haiti around the 12th of Feb. Here's my thinking on the subject:

 

A. RC probably makes most of the money in Haiti .. Don't they even bring their own wait staff off to serve food? Port charges are probably free for RC since I assume they pay yearly or in some overall larger contract with Haiti to call that their private island/beach. It sounds like there are some locals which make money off of RC's private beach somehow ... maybe selling items on the beach? My solution - just provide an average amount of $$ to these vendors for the next few months if they (RC) are really being generous and let the locals use their time to go help others there and not mess with tourists.

 

B. Rather than put passengers into a situation where they may be uncomfortable (which is very bad when these passengers are paying big $$$ to be on a cruise), why doesn't RC substitute another sea day or another stop for the cruises .. and then lease a cargo ship to transport supplies to their private beach. They are going to get a lot more than 40 palettes of supplies in this way, and not put passengers into a strange/weird situation.

 

C. Seriously people ... Wouldn't you rather all give a $50 donation to Haiti and then hit another island? $50 / head is WAY more than those locals will make on the visits from those ships.

 

The prisons are emptied ... disease will be rampant... all those people need is supplies .. not rich Americans messing around.

 

RC - Donate generously in terms of Supplies and Money , and choose another port.

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New Adam Goldstein blog post: http://www.nationofwhynot.com/blog/?p=838#more-838

 

Guest Post: Update on Royal Caribbean’s Relief Efforts Taking Place in Port Au Prince

I am proud of what our people and our ships are doing and below John Weis gives some very specific examples of great contributions being made by great Royal Caribbean people and their family members

 

The ships going back to Labadee, including Navigator of the Seas today, are obviously making a very valuable contribution to the relief effort by offloading supplies at Labadee. The media understand this and generally have written and spoken about the relief effort in positive terms. But in the last 24 hours, sparked by an article in the Guardian in the UK, a different and more critical view has emerged that questions how our guests can justify having a good time in Labadee when there is such misery less than 100 miles away.

 

My view is this — it isn’t better to replace a visit to Labadee (or for that matter, to stay on the ship while it’s docked in Labadee) with a visit to another destination for a vacation. Why? Because being on the island and generating economic activity for the straw market vendors, the hair-braiders and our 230 employees helps with relief while being somewhere else does not help. These 500 people are going to need to support a much larger network of family and friends, including many who are in (or are missing in) the earthquake zone. Also, the north is going to bear a good part of the burden of the agony of the south, and the more economic support there is to the north, the better able the north will be to bear this burden. People enjoying themselves is what we do. People enjoying themselves in Labadee helps with relief. We support our guests who choose to help in this way which is consistent with our nearly 30 year history in Haiti.

 

To John:

 

The team has been working through this holiday weekend and has been in contact with several people on the ground in Port Au Prince so I wanted to focus this blog on the efforts that are taking place there. We have all come to appreciate the resilience of the Haitian people and I think its important to share with you some of the positive things that are happening on the ground that are being coordinated by regular people like you and I.

 

 

Maryse Kedar, the President SOLANO, which is our company in Haiti, is an incredible woman. Despite some of their own losses, her and her team have started organizing their own relief efforts in Petionville by coordinating a water distribution process. She obtained access to a large water truck and found a safe water source for consumption and has orchestrated the distribution of this critical resource.

 

Fritz Montlaifir who is the brother of our close colleague Martine Pasquet is working with businesses in Port Au Prince to organize all available trucks to carry supplies from Labadee to Port Au Prince. He is also using his hotel as a first aid station and a central point to distribute supplies.

 

Also we have received a flood of inquires from the Haitian community in the US and Florida asking how they can help and what they can do to coordinate relief efforts in partnership with Royal Caribbean.

 

These are the types of people that are going to make the difference and help in Haiti’s recovery over the long term.

 

Finally, I want to again ask for you support by donating to one of the charities we have partnered with. Cash donations to the Food for the Poor or PADF is still the best way to show your support. I encourage you to make a financial contribution at http://www.foodforthepoor.org/royalcaribbean. Again, no matter how small, every contribution counts towards helping Haiti through this horrendous time.

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For those of you out there that think RCI should stay away from Haiti and for those due to visit Labadee I urge you to read the link below and see sense!

 

Haiti needs ships to go elsewhere like they need a hole in the head.

 

As for the article in the UK Guardian .... many replies will be from people who will have never heard of Labadee nor ever been on a cruise! nor even given Haiti a thought prior to the Earthquake .... the bad reporting gives those people a bandwagon on which to jump!

 

http://travel.sky.com/inspiration/blogs/Cruise-Diary

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RE: "We'll get off at Labadee, enjoy the vacation we've been waiting for, spend some money to help the local economy and then move on.

 

*****************

 

At last - a sensible post! I have been to Labadee a few times -- it is a wholly protected area walled in and guarded by armed security staff from Haiti.

 

Denying Labadee, Haiti a port call by cruise ships during this crisis is akin to staying away from tourist spots in Northern or Southern California that happen to be near recent quake devastation. I've been through several big quakes, including the infamous 6.4 in Northridge. Numerous parts of the L.A. area were a total mess, many lives lost, people severely injured. We had NO services for days -- Did people stop visiting Disneyland, some 50 miles away, to show some skewed support for those in trouble? NO! California, like Haiti, needed the revenue.

 

Haitians who staff Labadee and the artists/craftsmen who are permitted onto the property during ships' calls desperately WANT our business -- they rely on it for their livelihoods and those of their families and neighbors. Yet some of these people on the CC boards want to deny them the opportunity to sell their wares?

 

Young kids in kayaks come from nearby villages to the waters around Labadee on port day, and passengers drop tons of 'change' into the water and the kids dive for it -- should this practice end in Haiti's time of trouble?

 

If there is no port call, there is no opportunity for the cruise line to drop off much needed supplies for land transport to affected areas. Does that sound like a good thing?

 

Those who don't like the idea of a sun and fun day at Labadee while others are suffering should either change ships to another itinerary or just stay on the ship -- but they are doing the natives no favors.

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I know they are trying but logistically, I can't see them keeping Labadee as a port stop in the coming weeks.

 

People will move to where the supplies are and that 100 mile distance is going to close rapidly. I also watched a clip of Hilary Clinton talking about the disaster and she mentioned several times, "we don't have a port" to bring supplies into. They have to find a way to distribute the donations that are being offered.

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