The Bahamas’ Minister of Tourism Dionisio D’Aguilar announced this week that the country will no longer monetarily incentivize cruise lines to visit Nassau. According to The Nassau Guardian, the Bahamian government has spent $12 million a year to entice major cruise lines into visiting the island.
The Bahamian government officials no longer believe paying the cruise lines is a fair deal because too many passengers choose to stay on the ships, thus not spending any money in port.
Minister D’Aguilar said, “Why are we paying them to bring cruise passengers to our port and then we’re finding that some of them are not coming off? So why are we giving incentives for people to come to Nassau and sit on the boat, eat their food and not spend money in our country?”
Instead of paying to attract the cruise lines to visit Nassau the Bahamian government has instead decided to try and modernize the port to get those who do visit off the ships. D’Aguilar stated, “The goal is once this transformation has taken place, there will be a better offering of excursions, a better offering of goods, a better offering of food and beverage options, the cruise passengers will be minded – not only the cruise passengers but also the crew – will be minded to come off the ships and spend more money in the port.”
Credit: The Nassau Guardian