Jump to content
nini

Current input of cruisers to this port?

Recommended Posts

I am hoping that anyone who visits this port in October/ November can relay the status and how the island

is recovering.

Our cruise line is not changing the itinerary for January and our traveling friends really do not want to visit ports where there is nothing to do or anywhere to spend money to help with the local businesses.

The same would also apply to other damaged Eastern Caribbean ports. Our final payment is in a couple of weeks.

TIA

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We are sailing Mid November and our itinerary has not changed. Our cruise line was supposed to let us know of any changes 30 days out and they have not updated our itinerary. They have sent some ships west. Some of us fear they will STILL send us to St Maarten and San Juan. I just read an update on the islands and I will feel terrible if they send us there-so many people are still trying to put thier lives back together. If I had the option to re-book/cancel-I would. But of course all this happened after our final payment was due.

 

This update is from today, October 13.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/13/travel/caribbean-tourism-hurricane-recovery.html

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Kateg-

We are on Princess. Depending on your cruise line and/or cruise insurance; you may be able to cancel or transfer your funds to a different cruise with the same cruise line (at a later date).

I feel for you as well, and would love to know what will happen with your cruise!

Please keep us informed.

Note: It is not that we do not have any sympathy; it is that there would be no shore excursions or stores to spend any money to be able to support the locals.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It is highly doubtful that the cruise ships will return if there are no shore excursions available or if there are no stores open. They have a vested interested in making sure there is something for you to do when they drop you off. The areas like San Juan, St. Thomas, and St. Martin that were hardest hit will not be back 100% any time soon, but there will still be some of those things available before the cruise ships return.

 

You will just have to decide whether there is enough available to get off the ship. And to determine if it is worth it knowing that you are helping the island recover even if it is a 'lesser' experience.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am not concerned about having a "lesser" experience- just that how and where would I contribute to the economy

if there are no available venues to do so.

And yes, I would think that it would be important to the cruise line as well, because they have an income from their own shore excursions.

It is just frustrating to not get an answer from the cruise line before final payment- we are willing but our traveling companions are not.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The problem is that everyone is aiming at a "moving target". It is impossible to be certain about conditions two or three months from now. Ships will be returning to St. Maarten in just over three weeks. Of course, there will be less going on than before the storms -- but the best way to have things "going on" is to pump some money and - MORE IMPORTANT - morale into the island.

 

The lines are, of course, playing it by ear - they cannot be 100% certain about what ports will be ready - or when.

 

But you knew at the time you booked the cruise that the itinerary would be subject to change -- without your prior consent. So, best advice is to suck it up and enjoy yourself -- it is not all about you; the islanders need help, and people showing up - perhaps just to go to a beach and drink a beer - is real help at this point.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Again, I would love to SPEND my money there!!! If there are venues in which to do so; And yes, I realize what a contract/ agreement is- I am a paralegal and believe me, I can teach a class on sucking it up.

I am trying to navigate my way with another couple who have doubts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Again, I would love to SPEND my money there!!! If there are venues in which to do so; And yes, I realize what a contract/ agreement is- I am a paralegal and believe me, I can teach a class on sucking it up.

I am trying to navigate my way with another couple who have doubts.

 

Understood.

 

I do believe, however, that a cruise line would not plan a stop there if there were not a fair number of options available to passengers. It is virtually certain that the beaches (and transportation to them) will be available. And it is also virtually certain that at least some of the shopping venues will be up and running - possibly even with attractive "back in business" prices.

 

Of course, there will be less going on than in normal times, but I suspect the traditional welcoming attitude of the residents will be even warmer.

 

We have cancelled our usual two weeks in January on the island because where we stay has been seriously damaged and they are closed "until further notice" - but with a minimum of nine months estimated. As an alternative we have booked a twelve day cruise - and hope that the still-scheduled port call at Philipsburg does remain.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Again, I would love to SPEND my money there!!! If there are venues in which to do so.

 

Not understanding why you are so stuck on the question of 'Will there be things to do there?" Yes, there will. Will there be as many things as before the hurricane? Probably not. But, at a minimum, like NavyBankerTeacher said, you can go to the beach and drink a beer. And even that little bit would help the island.

 

The only question now is: Is what is available worth getting off the ship to do? Only you can answer that one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In talking to a friend who owns 2 stores there on Front street is in good shape as far as the buildings go and they are working on the beach area. The dock area which he has one store took a good hit but they are getting it together also . The island as a whole is in very bad shape as we all can see. Orient beach is just about gone. The airport is working out of tents and is taking flights. The nicer hotels are down for who knows how long. R.C.C.L. has just tell everyone that they are back this next month. It looks like to me that most people will be around town area and dock area or on the beach. Getting around the island could become tuff for the near future ! I thought that they might put our cruise back on the port list but Celebrity confirmed to us today that we are going to St. Kitts and St. Criox for sure! And St Croix is not in great shape either ! We are just going to enjoy the cruise and let everything fall into place !

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The goal of this thread was to ask cruisers to let others know of the status of islands and their thoughts.

TIA to those who may do so.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We are going November 11th, scheduled to stop in St. Maarten and San Juan, no change in itineraries.....yet. If we do stop, I will post and let everyone know what's going on.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
We are going November 11th, scheduled to stop in St. Maarten and San Juan, no change in itineraries.....yet. If we do stop, I will post and let everyone know what's going on.

 

Please do! Many of us will be very interested!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
We are going November 11th, scheduled to stop in St. Maarten and San Juan, no change in itineraries.....yet. If we do stop, I will post and let everyone know what's going on.

 

That would be very appreciated. Feel terrible for them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
That would be very appreciated. Feel terrible for them.

 

Look up Ukigirl's posts. Her trip was changed to Western Carribbean. Royal was going to Sint Maarten on Nov 11th. Then people who work for Royal visited the island to see what Sint Maarten had to offer. The first cruise going back to Sint Maarten is now December 17, 2017. The Oasis class ships and Quantum (Anthem) class are not going back until after the New Year (January 2018) because the dock (s?) that accommodate these size ships needs to be repaired.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I will be on Grandeur in December, docking in St Maarten on December 17, so I guess we will be the first ship. I am planning to go up to Orient Beach, but if anyone has specific questions, I can see if I can answer them.

 

Regards,

Mike

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We will be on the Independence docking in St Maarten on Dec 25. We plan to hit Mullet Bay and Maho Beach. Same offer of any specific questions that Mike made above.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I will be on Grandeur in December, docking in St Maarten on December 17, so I guess we will be the first ship. I am planning to go up to Orient Beach, but if anyone has specific questions, I can see if I can answer them.

 

Regards,

Mike

 

I planned on going to Kakao Beach which is a part of Orient. There has been no updates on their website and I cant find anything. I am sure the communications are bad. The French side of the island seems to have really been battered. I will be anxiously be waiting to hear about what you see on your trip to Orient.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I do not think KKO exists at this point. It will be great to get a report from cruisers on Grandeur who visit Orient Beach on December 17, 2017 - they can tell us what is there at that time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
We will be on the Independence docking in St Maarten on Dec 25. We plan to hit Mullet Bay and Maho Beach. Same offer of any specific questions that Mike made above.

 

Please post about Mullet Bay beach !! We will be there in May 2018 on the Allure. We always walk from Mullet to Maho and have a burger and beer at Guy's. I'm already planning on buying whatever the ladies on the beach are selling so I sure hope that there is a beach !!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I will be on Grandeur in December, docking in St Maarten on December 17, so I guess we will be the first ship. I am planning to go up to Orient Beach, but if anyone has specific questions, I can see if I can answer them.

 

Regards,

Mike

 

We are on the Jewel, docking in St. Maarten on December 26. We would love to go to Orient Beach. If you learn of anywhere there we can go to, that would be great!

 

Renee

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Visiting St. Maarten in January. Has anyone done the helmet dive shore excursion? Any thoughts? I have watched youtube of people and they have had their photo taken...does the company take photos for you to buy, or do you have to bring along a waterproof camera?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Please post about Mullet Bay beach !! We will be there in May 2018 on the Allure. We always walk from Mullet to Maho and have a burger and beer at Guy's. I'm already planning on buying whatever the ladies on the beach are selling so I sure hope that there is a beach !!

 

 

Mullet is apparently in great shape. I have had 2 airlines cancel on us for our new year's visit but if the 3 Rd one IS the charm I will report back on Mullet after our trip.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Mullet is apparently in great shape. I have had 2 airlines cancel on us for our new year's visit but if the 3 Rd one IS the charm I will report back on Mullet after our trip.

Thanks Karysa!! You and Gary are the ones who sent me to Mullet Bay 5 years ago. It has become our happy place when cruising and we return often, never tiring of the beauty of the island and graciousness of the people. We will be there in May and also December '18.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As we own a timeshare there we have been following the recovery efforts very closely. The first cruise ship (Viking Cruises) arrived today to much fanfare.

 

Everyday another restaurant announces they have just opened or about to. Orient Beach was totally wiped out and will not have any establishments open for many months. Karakter Beach (one of our favorites) is a great alternative and they are fully open.

 

The boardwalk looks to be in very good shape and many stores/restaurants are open.

 

While the island will not be 100% for some time, it is my opinion that cruisers will have an excellent visit!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
As we own a timeshare there we have been following the recovery efforts very closely. The first cruise ship (Viking Cruises) arrived today to much fanfare.

 

Everyday another restaurant announces they have just opened or about to. Orient Beach was totally wiped out and will not have any establishments open for many months. Karakter Beach (one of our favorites) is a great alternative and they are fully open.

 

The boardwalk looks to be in very good shape and many stores/restaurants are open.

 

While the island will not be 100% for some time, it is my opinion that cruisers will have an excellent visit!

 

I hear that Orient beach itself is being enjoyed by the do it yourself types of visitors. Will it really be months before there are vendors of any type there?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This video of Orient Bay seems to be from November 28th. It still does not look good.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This video of Orient Bay seems to be from November 28th. It still does not look good.

 

 

Thank you. That is tough to watch but certainly shows the devastation of the follage and buildings. I have read where folks are going to and enjoying the beach. I wouldn't be able to myself just yet.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thank you. That is tough to watch but certainly shows the devastation of the follage and buildings. I have read where folks are going to and enjoying the beach. I wouldn't be able to myself just yet.

Totally agree. Surprised that Royal Caribbean actually has shore excursion listed for Orient Beach on their site for Dec sailings.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Totally agree. Surprised that Royal Caribbean actually has shore excursion listed for Orient Beach on their site for Dec sailings.

 

There may or may not be rest room facilities - but, even if not, there are a number of Caribbean beaches without such amenities which still attract cruisers. I would hope that Royal Caribbean would make status clear.

 

Bottom line: a beach is a strip sand along the water - even without shops, bars, restaurants, etc. Orient is still a beach.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
There may or may not be rest room facilities - but, even if not, there are a number of Caribbean beaches without such amenities which still attract cruisers. I would hope that Royal Caribbean would make status clear.

 

Bottom line: a beach is a strip sand along the water - even without shops, bars, restaurants, etc. Orient is still a beach.

 

The only excursions that mention Orient Beach in the excursion section of Independence of the Seas for the Dec 25 port stop are the ATV Adventure and the 4x4 Tour. You basically do your tour inland and then stop at the beach for a break. My guess is those doing the tour are not looking to be pampered on the beach with food, drink, and comfortable loungers.

 

But, I agree, they should make it clear, and currently it does not say anything about the condition of Orient - only this "Orient Beach: Cool off with a swim in the turquoise waters and relax on the pristine white sands" and this "Enjoy panoramic views of the mountains, then stop at Orient Beach on this on and off-roads tour."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As to Orient Beach, my understanding is new regulations are being proposed before anyone can rebuild. Yes I believe it will be months before restaurants/bars will reappear on the beach. Right behind the beach there is a shopping area near where La Playa was. These is an Italian restaurant that has already reopened so some progress is being made.

 

As to still going to the beach itself. yes, I agree that if you are fine with sitting on a towel and enjoying the water it is a great beach to visit!

 

Every week some place on St Maarten reopens. With all the demands on resources it will take time but in my opinion this island is still one of the top to visit!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
There may or may not be rest room facilities - but, even if not, there are a number of Caribbean beaches without such amenities which still attract cruisers. I would hope that Royal Caribbean would make status clear.

 

Bottom line: a beach is a strip sand along the water - even without shops, bars, restaurants, etc. Orient is still a beach.

 

Your Bottom line: reminds me of the beautiful Orient beach I first visited in 1992.

 

I loved it. Post Irma is not the same as a beautiful untouched beach. The “brokenness” is heartbreaking to me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not sure what you are asking let's go cruising?

 

Several fine dining restaurant have just reopened in Grand Case. Karakter Beach has posted the Christmas menu for Breakfast and Lunch/Dinner and the Blue Bitch Bar has reopened on the boardwalk. I am seeing posts almost every day about another reopening. Now they just need customers!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Not sure what you are asking let's go cruising?

 

Several fine dining restaurant have just reopened in Grand Case. Karakter Beach has posted the Christmas menu for Breakfast and Lunch/Dinner and the Blue Bitch Bar has reopened on the boardwalk. I am seeing posts almost every day about another reopening. Now they just need customers!

 

People are also concerned about their safety. It's fine that restaurants and beaches are open but we need to know that the area is safe. Any word on safety in these areas in the last month or so since things are getting back to normal?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×