The executive director of the Puerto Rico Tourism Co., Carla Campos, informed that the Royal Caribbean cruise line resumed its scheduled visits to Puerto Rico with the arrival of Allure of the Seas, on July 18.
In light of the ensuing protests that have consumed Old San Juan since last Saturday, and fearing for the safety of its passengers, Royal Caribbean cancelled the programmed stops of cruises Empress of the Seas, which had 1,718 passengers, and the Harmony of the Seas, with 6,546 passengers.
According to the PRTC official, these arrivals would have contributed $657,154.39 to the economy.
Despite previous concerns, the Allure of the Seas set anchor on Old San Juan’s Muelle 3 with an estimated 6,392 passengers.
“The islet is able to receive the more than 6,000 passengers that are disembarking this morning in Puerto Rico. Moreover, the companies that provide excursions and taxi drivers are at their stations ready to serve visitors,” Campos said via press release.
Meanwhile, the PRTC is working in coordination with the Police Department, the Bureau of Transportation & Public Services (NTSP by its Spanish initials), and the Ports Authority to monitor entries and departures, as well as street closures. In addition, the PRTC is reportedly providing orientation to the tourism industry so they can properly guide visitors.
“As part of the contingency plan activated by the PRTC, we have staff in the docking area and in the Information Center, located in Edificio Ochoa, to inform visitors about the events that took place through the islet’s streets,” Campos explained.
The executive director added that the PRTC has been in “constant communication” with the Florida Caribbean Cruise Association and cruise line executives to keep them informed on local events, “and to reiterate that we are ready to offer alternatives that ease the arrival of cruise ships to the Port of San Juan.”
Moreover, Campos stressed that the destination marketing organization, Discover Puerto Rico—which is in charge of promoting the island to foreign audiences—is upholding its “crisis management plan” to uphold Puerto Rico as an idyllic tourist destination.
“It is also important to highlight that the protests have taken place in Old San Juan, but that main attractions are currently operational; hotels are open, and excursions continue their regular schedules,” she stated.
“We remain in constant communication with all government agencies to update and bolster our contingency plan, as necessary, and with our industry partners to inform them of any future occurrence,” Campos added.
Lastly, the PRTC executive director informed that both Royal Caribbean and Carnival Cruise Line will set anchor next Sunday, July 21 with Freedom of the Seas and Carnival Fascination, respectively. Both will use San Juan as a homeport to begin and conclude their travel itineraries on the island.