Bahamas going downhill as a tourist destination
The Bahamas seems to be suffering from tourism hangover. You know, when one of those great Caribbean tourist destinations bites the hand that feeds it. In other words, they get sick of tourists. The Bahamas suffered one of the worst declines in tourist stopovers in the first quarter of 2007, dropping by five percent over the same time period last year. Officials estimate that’s about a $19 million, and it appears to be part of a long-term trend. The strict, U.S. passport situation is definitely part of the problem, along with other factors, like a temporary loss of hotel rooms, problems with airports and not enough cruise ship berths. But, a deeper problem is also suspected. I saw this on other islands, particularly St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin islands, where the overwhelming numbers of tourists create cynicism, apathy and even hostility. “…The fact is, we are becoming a filthy, overpriced destination offering few visitor attractions and, for the most part, horrible customer service.” says a Bahamaian newsletter called Bahamas B2B.com. An editorial in the Tribune, the main paper in Nassau, said: “It is the neglect, indifference and failure of Bahamians to get the job done that has contributed to the Bahamas’ dramatic tumble from the No. 1 position in an industry that this country once dominated.” If you want people who aren’t jaded from tourism, I suggest one of the “out islands.”
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