Ivan to blame for dismal Oct. tourism

Hurricane Ivan is to blame for putting a big, fat zero in October 2004’s slot for cruise passenger arrivals.

October’s cruise tourist arrival statistics, which have just been posted on the Department of Tourism’s (DoT) website, displays a zero for October 2004, the month following the passage of the devastating Hurricane Ivan through the Cayman Islands.

October 2004’s figure stands beside cruise passenger arrivals figure of 159,589 for the same month of 2003 and 88,328 for the corresponding month in 2002.

The air arrivals figure of 1,841 for October 2004 also stands out alongside its 2003, 2002 and 2001 counterparts of 18,879, 16,151 and 15,898 respectively.

However, the figures for the 10 months of air arrivals, up to and including October, 2004 (244,779) stand up quite well to the overall 12-month figure for the previous year (293,517).

Total cruise arrivals for the first 10 months of 2004 stands at 1,352,556, compared to the full year (12 months) for 2003, at 1,818,979.

September 2004’s air arrivals figure of 5,017 stands beside previous year’s in the 11,000s while the cruise figure of 41,596 stands beside previous years of 113,258 (2003), 69,328 (2002), and 64,890 (2001).

The website, www.caymanislands.ky, points out that Hurricane Ivan hit the Cayman Islands on September 11/12 2004.

It reads, ‘As a result, statistics following September 12, 2004 include records of regular visitors, relief workers and related authorised travel.’

It continues, ‘Due to the effects of Hurricane Ivan, the Cayman Islands Immigration Department implemented policies requiring prior approval for guests travelling by air to Grand Cayman after September 12, 2004. This policy remained in effect until November 20, 2004.

‘Due to Hurricane Ivan, cruise arrivals in the month of September are reflective only of ships which docked in Grand Cayman between September 1 and September 10, 2004. Cruise ships returned to Grand Cayman on November 1, 2004.’

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