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Jan 24, 2011

Carnival cruise ships cancel calls to Belize; massive economic loss to cruise tourism

There’s grim news in cruise tourism; this week alone ten thousand passengers will not be coming to the Jewel.  That’s because there will be a noticeable absence of Carnival cruise ships from our waters this week as four of its vessels; namely the Dream which was scheduled to call on Belize on Tuesday, Glory which was scheduled for Wednesday and the Valor and Legend which were both slated to arrive on Thursday have all been canceled.  The cancellation of calls to Belize is the result of failed negotiations with the Belize Tourism Board, which had been given a deadline of last Friday at midday to determine who the tender operators would be to ferry tourists to the Fort Street Tourism Village and the rate they would be charging per passenger.  News Five understands that BTB has sent a letter to Carnival executives in Miami proposing that tendering be done by Maritime Estates Ltd., owned by Martha Williams, and Belize City Tenders Ltd., owned by Stanley Longsworth Sr.  Despite the correspondence we understand that Carnival is demanding a rate of five dollars U.S. per passenger while BTB has made it clear that the price is not viable.  Local tenders are requesting six dollars and fifty cents U.S. per passenger.  The absence of over ten thousand visitors this week is a massive economic loss to the cruise tourism industry.

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33 Responses for “Carnival cruise ships cancel calls to Belize; massive economic loss to cruise tourism”

  1. Earl Grey says:



  2. Dr. John says:

    I don’t know if the people we are sending to negotiate realize that we are up against a multi-billion dollar company which is explicitly waving it’s mighty fist at our Prime Minister and saying “Leave your politics out of our businesss or lose your industry” I am guessing Carnival’s Board is saying: If you want to provide the Tendering against our wishes then we will set it at a price you cannot afford so that at the end of the day we will do things our way and not yours. Carnival is not going to move off of this $5 demand that they know our operators cannot sustain. I can bet that Mr. Oshea’s boats are still sitting in Belizean waters like MJ or Kobe waiting on the sidelines for the referee to blow the whistle to get into and take over the game….We can’t win this one BELIZE. THIS IS STRICTLY BUSINESS!! If Mr. O’shea comes in, he will still need to hire Belizeans to work on his boats…he may not hire all 100 employees, he may only hire 50 or 60. But a loss of 40 jobs and 11 businesses for BUSINESSMEN whom made risky investments (when they had NO CONTRACT OR GUARANTEE) is not worth losing CARNIVAL. Sometimes you have to lose a dollar today so that you can earn two or three dollars tomorrow….DON’T SCREW OURSELVES and DON”T send criminal lawyers to negotiate business deals or business men who made risky investments and will kill our industry to save their own million dollar homes from a bank foreclousure. I also hope the Minister of Tourism is receiving detailed minutes of these negotiations so we the people can see if negotiators representing our country have their own interests at heart or the interests of our country. WE NEED CRUISE TOURISM EVEN IF IT MEANS WE CANNOT AFFORD TO DO THE TENDERING. Don’t send the cat to negotiate the release of the mouse.

  3. Josie says:

    keep them out we were doing well without them. We can market Belize in other ways and to other countries from Europe. We do not need the American baggage in Belize

  4. reggie says:

    My people learn from Carnival .Stand up for your right.Carnival let the BTB know $5.00 or we move on.The only one who is loosing out is the poor who is trying to make a living,and you guys are bein play again.Because Carnival want you all to cut this deal for them with the G.O.B.Reason only you all are you have to take Half of Loaf or nothing.Very sad how the games is play with the G.O.B.and the Big Company.What was the purpose of that trip to Miami?0000000.A lawer always protect a Criminal. NEXT ELECTION DON’T VOTE FOR LAWYERS.

  5. chabelli says:

    In life and economics sometimes we have no alternative;attorneys have no business in politics -we are suffering and if Government cannot protect its poorest then they will be removed by vilent means if necessary.

  6. Justice says:

    It is sad when these multi million dollar companies try to dictate to small countries. Yes sometimes you have to give to get but at the same time you cannot allow foreigners to get the better. They are also gaining.Tourism is good but we can attract tourist in other ways. Why cannot Belize have a cruise ship on its own that brings tourist here. Why do we need to depend on carnival? It will be expensive at firtst but in the end it will be all Belizean! I would agree with the $5.00 as there are other means of getting the $1.50.

  7. rod says:

    this is what happens when the pm goes to negotiate he cant even do this right much less anything else if he was a leader and i repeat if he was a leader he would tell these people exactly where to go and that is go to hell we dont need you lets promote our country to the europeans and to russia the middle east china and so on japan but since we do not have a leader in belize these things will continue to happen in every aspect of life in our country when we cannot even solve our domestic problems how do you think we can solve outside problems until the scurge of this udp gov. is gone nothing will change it will only get let it be written so let it be done.

  8. ESSB says:

    Rightly said. Sending politicians to negotiate is not a wise decision…we need these people especially considering the mess our country is in….poverty is getting out of control due to unemployment.

  9. soldier says:

    well said dr johns,belize is in a big mess because of those criminal law firms,and lawyers,belize is suffering from cancer,and that cancer is the lawyers,where ever they exist in politicians,or ministers.

  10. rod says:

    this is no surprize since no one wants to come to belize even the belizeans who have deserted their country to live in the usa and who can blame them since when you come to belize you will eighter be robbed or murdered or raped ,no law in the country no gov in the country no pm in the country all you have is a useless impotent gov. that has failed in every aspect so this is no surprize stay away from belize all you tourist if you come here you will eighter be robbed raped or killed and over charged so go elsewhere .

  11. Allan Daly says:

    An idle ship, as they say in the cruise industry, makes no money. So, besides the dissatisfaction of those people who’s main purpose on the cruise is to visit Belize could mean lost for Carnival. If Carnival continues to do this to its customers, it can also lose millions every time they do not call on Belize port. I cannot make an accurate estimate of the cost so far to the line, but this incident to date also have cost in lost revenue to Carnival. Yes, Carnival is playing hard ball but if the people give in now, what other pressure might Carnival place on the country so that they can bully a small country like Belize to get their own way. The Government and the People of Belize needs to stand up for once instead of allowing outsider to look at us as unlearned and boneless. When will the country take a real stand for the right of the citizens of the country? It seems that those who should represent the right of the citizen are always selling the people out. If Belize did not add revenue to carnival, they would not be here. They also profit from Belize port and the people should not be scared of carnival tactics of trying to punish Belize, They can only do this for so long. Wake Up people…

  12. Proud Belizean says:

    Dean screw up TOURISM….and the whole country!

  13. louisville,ky says:

    Allan Daley, I could not have said it better myself. Unless Belizeans stand up to this bully named carnival, there is no telling what their next demands will be. Trust me, they are losing way more in terms of customer satisfaction and monitarily by playing hard ball and not calling at the Jewel. But….. this is so typical of bullies. When the game is not going according to the rules that they themselves set, they pick up their ball and go home. Well, happy riddance!!

  14. Robert says:

    Someone is killing the goose that lays the golden egg. All Belize will suffer for the greed of a few and the incompetence of GOB to act decisively.

  15. The People Had Enough says:

    hahaha, now we now what happens when we become totally dependent on this type of tourism. Their obligation is to their bottom line. Belizeans, Belizeans, Belizeans, so naive and we will continue to be taken advantage off if we do not stop being.

  16. louisville,ky says:

    Somebody mentioned it on this blog……. why don’t we buy our own cruise ship?? That’s food for thought, you know. That way we don’t have to be kissing carnival’s funky stern scrambling and fighting each other over some crumbs. Think about it Mr. Man !!

  17. daveyt says:

    Check the company that is doing the customs clearance etc. for those big Tenders, and remember that they could not have entered Belize without a government issued import licence, nor without being registered as a company in Belize…….BTALCO – Singh – UDP Cronies — Ring any bells???

  18. RETACULATA says:

    Carnival or any other multinational in our land MUST have something to loose if they act the way this company acts and abuses the will and right of many involved with their lives in this industry. they are asking US2,000K insurance policies so we (government as regulator)shud demand a liability of at least US40,000K (scale to calculate on a 200 tender cap. vessel) insurance/bond per vessel at port belize as a requirement to come here. additionally, require high substantial level of investments in infrastructure and human resources in the locals willing and wanting to grow, partner with these lines to excercise corporate responsibility. it has to be so juicy for them to keep coming and to double the pax count in les than 10 years. read

    so there it is, the reason of where we are going, and they will demand 250 + in the very soon.
    Make so clear that if they want to pull or want a divorce it will cost them too, as it costs the locals to invest their lives. they would show respect and think twice to cnxl or abandon this port.


  19. Rizzo says:

    Haiti here we come slowly but surely.

  20. Luv2Cruz says:

    You are wrong if you think that Carnival is losing money by not stopping at Belize. Some cruise pax would rather have a day at sea and do not get upset by missing a port – if you cruise you know that NO port is a sure thing anyway and you agree to that in your cruise documents if you miss a port. Most Carnival pax back them on their decision. I am scheduled to cruise on the Dream in Aug. At first I was disappointed having never been to Belize to hear of these issues but now after reading some of these comments from Belizeans I could care less if we stop at this port or not. I would rather keep my american baggage on the ship and spend my american dollar in a port that greets and welcomes cruise pax with hospitality not hostility. What a way to make your beautiful country UGLY!

  21. Earl Grey says:

    Rizzo……….U an IDIOT.


  22. Blind Eye Jamesie says:

    I walk down Albert St yesterday and I with mi bad eye I see wah massive building di go up at the end. E look like while everybadi gat haadtime, Barrow and Williiams di float in money.
    Oh I can see the apologists repeating MIke singh’s position ” I am no longer a signatory to that company.

  23. Earl Grey says:

    LET’S EAT THIS ONE………………………

    THERE ARE OTHER WAYS TO MAKE UP THE MONEY…………………… ONCE they get onshore.

  24. John Boy/Carson, California says:

    Belize will never get the Lion share.Carnival was around before Belize, and will be around after Belize.Why kill the gooose that lays the golden egg.

  25. Mr C. says:

    Let carnival go somewhere else! They provide next to nothing for Belize, and anyone that can prove different, show us the numbers. “Massive losses!” Really? You sure about that? Can you prove it like you would have to do in second grade? No. Thanks then!

    And thanks to carnival…thanks for nothing. Now can you please go give nothing to somebody else!

  26. Consern says:

    Surely pride go before a fall, and empty pride is what many Belizeans has an abodant of. Foolish comment about buying our own cruise ship; when we cant even afford to own planes that can be lease, but we are going to own tourist ship that cost billions to construct. Do we think we have the ability to manage such a vessel let alone own one? Get real. When I first heard about this situation about the tendering I was very sympathetic to fellow Belizians who got caught between the rock and a hard place until I spoke to another Belizean who told me this business to improve tendering service is known for many years and that those in the business thought they can continue to skate by on constant low budget.

  27. vigilante justice 316 says:

    Luv2Cruz…..don’t act surprised when ppl stand up for their country it tends to get ugly. Nobody likes getting a raw deal, I hope the government is paying close attention to this. tourism is a fickle $!@#$% so don’t put all our eggs on this basket. Find other ways to grow our economy so we don’t have to be anyone’s $!@#$!

  28. citygurl says:

    I’m looking for more lines to cancel but not over tenders. I’ve been there (the pier) 3 times now to meet friends, heard gunshots on the first 2 trips–we were too scared to leave the pier…and they’re charging $3.00 for a 6 ounce CUP of beer? Really??? Haven’t met a cruiser yet who likes it there. I get needing the business ,but I wouIdn’t spend where I’m not wanted, and neither will they.

  29. Josh says:

    Cruisers dont mind if they go to Belize or not, they are just on holiday. Carnival will find another port to go and non aboard care about it. The GOB is killing its own country. Its better to get 5 USD from each passenger then nothing at all. Not only the tenders lose money but there are a lot of ppl who try to make a honest living ashore as well. Everybody is cutting down in cost to survive the economical crisis. But the GOB is staying stubborn on their demands and not willing to give in because they want to fill their own pockets and dont care about their ppl. Those kind of actions causes more poverty to the country and that means more criminality and corruption. And its not only the cruiseships they are mugging. Because of the high taxes and regulations companies has to attend when they want to settle down in Belize it makes them choose other countries to invest. Ppl of Belize, stand up, wake up, fight for your rights!

  30. Scotty says:

    I have been involved in Belize for a couple of years now and IMO the country as a whole needs to start thinking and acting more for the long term. Tourism is great in BZ and should be nurtured so that it will grow. Also, other industries need to take root to balance things out. Government needs to mature so that the few are not creating a system that is bought with corruption. I can see both sides of this picture. Passionate citizens that do not want to buckle under the bullying giant American Corporation flaunting its power… and people that see the need to lose a little in one area to gain in another.

  31. Andrew says:

    I visited Belize in Feb ’09 aboard the Carnival Miracle and we visited Caye Caulker and did some snorkeling at a couple spots. I had been planning a land vacation to Belize for next year because we enjoyed our brief time there a lot and wanted to spend more time there.

    Honestly I’m not sure who is right or wrong on this issue. I’m not sure how much it actually costs to run a tender boat. I hope it gets worked out and everyone can make a fair profit.

    I’m a little worried now that I will be looked at badly if we go there because I am an American tourist in Belize. I’ll be keeping an eye on the developments and hopefully my wife and I will be able to have an enjoyable vacation in Belize next year.

  32. Cristy (Canadian) says:

    I am scheduled to cruise on carnival Legend in March. I find as the days pass by, I am getting a more unbiased view of what is happening in Belize
    I even questioned if I would get off of the boat in Belize, because of the tendering issues.
    Some comments made by Belize people (Josie), and the fellow who had a banner on his bus….are just that…opinions by individuals. I don’t feel it is right to paint all with the same brush.
    I respect that people may have various opinions. I just hope it doesn’t tarnish peoples opinions about cruise ship passengers, or cruise ship passengers opinion about Belize.
    I hope this resolves soon. Cheers, Cristy

  33. Kcfoxy says:

    With the prices of everything going up, it would be in good conscience IMHO for Carnival to come up with the $6.50 per pax for a living wage, tenders kept in safe repair. Sadly, this does not seem likely to happen and the people who can least afford the pressure are made to pay.
    Some pax have written they don’t care whether they stop in the Jewel or not.

    Plenty of us do care…glad NCL Spirit will give us our first taste the beginning of next month. And there are plenty who would pay the difference out of pocket/as a tip/whatever to make things right. Okay,so I am a naive former hippie but really hope greed doesn’t win in this case. Peace out.

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