Vacationing in Haiti Despite the Devastation

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by ucfgrad93, Jan 22, 2010.

  1. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6

    ucfgrad93

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    #1
    Cruise ships have returned to Haiti loaded with tourists. They come ashore just 60 miles from Port-au-Prince. Obviously, this has raised some controversy. I think this a good thing for Haiti. It brings in much needed funds to the local population.

    What are your thoughts?

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,583689,00.html
     
  2. kavika411 macrumors 6502a

    kavika411

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    #2
    I'd prefer outsiders/foreigners (1) bear witness to the devastation (and hopefully be moved to help in some form or fashion), and (2) create/continue business economic opportunities for the locals, than not.
     
  3. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    #3
    As long as they stay out of the way of essential services and don't use up valuable resources then its a good thing. Going forward, the more outside contact the better.
     
  4. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

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    #4
    I agree but I also think these people are the same people on the road who stop and stare at accidents on the freeway. :mad: At least here there is some revenue for Haiti.
     
  5. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #5
    If they vacation in Haiti where does all the tourism money go?
     
  6. kavika411 macrumors 6502a

    kavika411

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    #6
    As someone who has been to Haiti directly (doing mission work), and indirectly as part of one of these (how did you say) accidents-on-the-freeway cruises, I enjoy the broad brush with which you paint. Hope you enjoy your grandstanding.
     
  7. Ugg macrumors 68000

    Ugg

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    #7
    Soundbites are worthless.

    First off, how much money do the cruise ships pay Haiti for the privilege of stopping there? Second, how much do the tourists spend? Third, how much real aid are the ships bringing?

    It would of course be stupid to stop going ashore simply because there is massive devastation elsewhere on the island, but tourism is a zero sum game. It creates a population dependent upon the fickle needs of multinational tour companies.

    I do hope that the cruise ships at least have the guts to pass the hat, not only amongst the tourists going ashore but in their corporate offices. It would be obscene if those who profit the most from Haiti give the least.
     
  8. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

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    #8
    There will be no rubbernecking. Royal Caribbean leases land from Haiti that they call Labadee where the ships dock. Labadee is nowhere near Port au Prince and it is completely fenced off from the rest of Haiti, cruise-goers are not allowed out, and Haitians, save for employees hired by RCI on the island, are not allowed in.

    According to Wiki, RCI pays Haiti $6 per passenger at Labadee. A cruise ship of 3,000 people is $18,000 for Haiti, which can go a long way in recovery efforts. So I say keep it open and keep the ships coming, not going to Haiti will be worse IMO.
     
  9. Zombie Acorn macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

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    #9
    Why would you be against this? If there are shops open they need tourist money, it could help some to get back on their feet and get back to some form of normality.
     
  10. Hmac macrumors 68020

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    #10
    LaBadee, where Royal Caribbean's terminal and beach is, is completely untouched by the earthquake and those cruise ship passengers see nothing of Port au Prince which is about 80 miles and two mountain ranges to the south. Those passengers don't even see anything of Cap Haitian, which is about 8 miles away. That's a good thing, because as big a pile pf crap as Port au Prince is in the BEST of circumstances, Cap Haitian is worse.
     
  11. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

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    #11
    I would disagree, there are quite a lot of independent tourists, and they go to places that are good. And as far as I can see when you do that you do a reasonable job of benefitting the locals.
     
  12. glocke12 macrumors 6502a

    glocke12

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    #12
    When I first heard about this I didnt think it was a very bright idea, but after reading more I dont think its a problem. First off, this beach is a good 60 miles from the scene of the earthquake. Secondly, The Haitian gov't (in addition to already getting millions of dollars from the cruise line for the use of the beach) gets much needed money for each passenger that visits the beach, in addition the locals (whose income depends on the tourists) are allowed access to the beach to sell souveniours to the tourists. I think it is a win-win situation for haiti.

    The devastation and suffering are still going be going whether people vacation there or not, by NOT vacationing there the local economy is going to suffer even more.
     
  13. bobob macrumors 68030

    bobob

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    #13
    How close is too close?

    If communities 60 miles away can't continue doing business with cruise ship passengers, then none of us who share the planet with Haiti should be doing business nor enjoying ourselves wherever we are until we get this whole Port-au-Prince disaster straightened out.
     
  14. Hmac macrumors 68020

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    #14
    Royal Caribbean has been a good tenant for the beach that they lease on the north coast (LaBadee), and continues to be so in the face of this disaster. The fees they pay Haiti are important, and currently they are donating a LOT to the relief effort. They employ about 200 Haitians.

    LaBadee has absolutely nothing to do with the rest of Haiti and it remains TOTALLY isolated from the earthquake disaster. It doesn't even LOOK like Haiti...rather just any other Caribbean beach and destination. In fact, for years, RCI referred to it just as their "private beach" or "private island" and avoided all mention to their passengers that it was in Haiti. There's no passport stamp, the beach itself isn't within walking distance of ANYTHING.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  15. Ugg macrumors 68000

    Ugg

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    #15

    I'll agree with that but cruise ships definitely don't qualify.

    If it's true that cruise ships stopping at Labadee never mentioned they were stopping at Haiti, then that is pretty sickening. It also seems as though their usage fees of the space are pretty low and they seem to be more afraid of upsetting the tourists than dealing with reality.
     
  16. Hmac macrumors 68020

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    #16
    Very, VERY few "independent" tourists would vacation in Haiti. Other than being part of a cruise line or similar highly-organized tourism activity, tourism in virtually non-existent in Haiti. And with good reason.
     
  17. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

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    #17
    I'd agree with that.

    Does anyone have a source for this? There's some contradiction on it in this thread.

    Agreed.

    True. I was thinking of the worldwide situation, and most other countries will have more independent tourists.
     
  18. Hmac macrumors 68020

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    #18
    They do now, but up until a few years ago it was kept pretty quiet. Never mentioned on shipwide announcements, and definitely only in the very fine print of their brochures. Typically, LaBadee was described by RCI as "our private island off the coast of Hispaniola" and various other similar obfuscations.

    As to "starving Haitians taking over LaBadee by force", it will never happen. In the first place, Cap Haitian area is untouched by the disaster. In fact, it's actually booming a little for the time being since it has the only other airport in Haiti that can receive jets or large passenger planes, and the airport at PAP is basically closed to anyone except the military. I'm sure things will get worse there as the population swell with refugees, but for right now, Cap Haitian is doing just fine.
     
  19. Arran macrumors 68040

    Arran

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    #19
    The Haiti disaster is awful beyond belief, but the outside world MUST continue with business as usual to generate cash to help the sticken.

    Consider Hurricane Katrina. It decimated New Orleans which sits on the same landmass as Orlando and Las Vegas. Did we stop international tourists arriving at Disneyworld or the casinos? Would it have helped if we did?
     
  20. bobob macrumors 68030

    bobob

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    #20
    Excellent analogy.
     
  21. abijnk macrumors 68040

    abijnk

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    #21
    I'm surprised no body has mentioned the fact that the cruise ships are also delivering supplies for the rescue effort, like water.
     
  22. opinioncircle macrumors 6502a

    opinioncircle

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    #22
    If ships can actually bring much needed aid, then I'm all for it. Thing is I think that some people are going there to feel like they're rich or some, and to me that's wrong. That's not the majority of course, but I hope people who are going there can do some good while on vacation.
     
  23. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    #23
    Not really.

    Haiti is one half of an island. A very small land mass compared to the Continental US. Most of Haiti was affected by the earthquake whereas most of the US was not affected by Katrina. You cannot compare the two situations like you did.
     
  24. Hmac macrumors 68020

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    #24
    Not really. Most of Haiti WAS NOT affected by the earthquake.
     
  25. flopticalcube macrumors G4

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    You are correct. I should say, a far greater portion of Haiti was affected by the earthquake than the US was by Katrina. The analogy is still invalid, IMO.
     

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