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Juanita
(@Juanita)
Expert

Oh my Gawd!!! Did you read the Avis this morning? Disney Magic refunded $13,000 to passengers because of poor customer service on STX, according to the Avis article. It sited "island tours" as being complained about, but the one that really gets me is that businesses in Christiansted were closed and, believe it or not, according to the paper, the Cruzan Rum Factory was closed. They were here on Jan. 6, so I guess people took off for Three King's Day.

We have a ship in on Jan. 20, Inauguration Day. Will places be closed again? If you know anyone who owns a tourism related business, and they plan to close that day, please, please ask them not to. If we mess this up again, we're toast.

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Topic starter Posted : January 16, 2009 2:59 pm
chefnoah
(@chefnoah)
Trusted Member

Yep, read all about it! Not hard to believe.

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Posted : January 16, 2009 3:34 pm
nforbes
(@nforbes)
Trusted Member

In addition, the Disney Cruise lines are telling their passengers before getting off the boat on STX to not buy anything b/c St. Thomas has the better deals. Wonderful. Maybe that's why local stores aren't making anything off the boats and places like Purple Papaya (which has a St. Thomas location) are.

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Posted : January 16, 2009 3:34 pm
STXResident
(@STXResident)
Advanced Member

I believe all the cruise line tell passengers to wait till STT to shop because the stores kick back to the ships.

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Posted : January 16, 2009 4:11 pm
marlene
(@marlene)
Advanced Member

Juanita, so far I have heard Sonyas is closed. I'm sure it will be more of the same. Government has declared it a holiday so schools are off. We need to get a vendor or two at Sandy Point since most of the taxis at Frederiksted are not able to drive to C'sted.

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Posted : January 17, 2009 12:27 pm
GoodToGo
(@GoodToGo)
Trusted Member

Wait, what? What do you mean most of the F'sted taxis aren't able to drive to C'sted? Why? How are 1,000+ cruise ship visitors supposed to get around? Do the cruise lines setup a shuttle service ahead of time for them? If not maybe the local merchants association (is there one) should consider it.

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Posted : January 17, 2009 7:04 pm
Neil
 Neil
(@Neil)
Trusted Member

Juanita, so far I have heard Sonyas is closed. I'm sure it will be more of the same. Government has declared it a holiday so schools are off. We need to get a vendor or two at Sandy Point since most of the taxis at Frederiksted are not able to drive to C'sted.

Ha! A better question is "will the taxis be able to get to Sandy Pt !" 😎

I was talking to the Ranger out there and laughing about how I made everyone get out of my car to "get over that one rock" and he knew exactly which rock I was talking about. Said he has to tow cars all the time who lose their oilpans on that rock.

Some good news: Ranger said the funding is approved to completely rebuild the Sandy Pt road. Even going to straighten it out a bit.

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Posted : January 18, 2009 12:19 am
marlene
(@marlene)
Advanced Member

Something in the (union) policy states that the taxis that are in F'sted only go to the airport and visa versa. But you know they are probably getting the people to wherever they want to go so long as they don't get caught. Also there is a moritorium on adding any more licensing to taxi services. Currently the old law only allows 50. We only have 50! taxi vans on the island. Not anywhere near the amount to push the people around that will be coming off that boat Tuesday. It is packed too. 3500 passengers and whatever crew amount....if half of those get off...

When the Disney tourists asked taxi drivers for a beach setting, they all chose Hotel On The Cay.....this wasn't planned by any of those folks so they weren't ready for so many people. Lunch was included as part of the excursion. Can you imagine how that went?

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Posted : January 18, 2009 11:19 am
islandtyme
(@islandtyme)
Trusted Member

What a JOKE! Another cruise ship docking to the island of misfits again............All the stores will be closed, taxi drivers will continue raping & pillaging, more disappointed cruise passengers, more refunds & soon STX will once again be REMOVED from the cruise stops!!!!!!!!!!
I completely understand Tuesday will be a history making day with Obama being sworn in..................history will also be made as we continue to IGNORE & DISRESPECT our visitors............this isn't a field of dreams....we built the pier in the silly belief they would come.......well finally they did (with deJohns help) & now we're all just too busy to be bothered with them!!!!! Why can't we be joyful about Obama's big day & celebrate it with others from around the globe while inviting them to relish our lil island?
Guess change is coming.............we're changing this place right back to the eyesore of the Caribbean *SIGH* I had such hi-hopes, once again reality bonks me in the head.....aaaahhhhhh the good ole USVI.

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Posted : January 18, 2009 1:16 pm
Lizard
(@Lizard)
Trusted Member

Hotel on the Cay always serviced the ships,( they use to have a buffet like their Tuesday night event.) On the Cay they have wave runners, chairs, snorkel equipment, kayaks, floats etc for rent. They had a voucher system for cruise passengers. The Taxi vans would line up and transport with no problems. Maybe because it was a holiday things didn't go to well. I'm sure they will work the kinks out. Oh and Hovensa paid the majority of the cost for the pier.

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Posted : January 18, 2009 2:51 pm
terry
(@terry)
Expert

I'm glad there are only 50 taxis. On Roatan, there are over 200 taxis and it is such a nightmare with the way they drive.

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Posted : January 18, 2009 3:14 pm
Juanita
(@Juanita)
Expert

I'm a little confused. So, if C'sted taxis can't come pick up F'sted people, and F'sted taxis can't take people to C'sted, does that mean the only way a cruise ship passenger can get to C'sted is on an island tour excursion?

Somebody, please tell me it ain't so!!!

Marlene, Are you saying the taxis took "excursion" passengers to Hotel on the Cay, with lunch included, and the restaurant didn't know? Isn't that something they would have to plan in advance? Did the taxi drivers just pay for peoples' lunch?

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Topic starter Posted : January 19, 2009 1:26 am
marlene
(@marlene)
Advanced Member

No, the taxi drivers are able to take people where they want, but they are not allowed to wait for a fair in the other areas that aren't in their contract.

The taxis were told to give an island tour to the people and lunch was provided per the tour. I saw a taxi come into the marina with his people to eat at the Golden Rail. We weren't told he would come with a van load. And I'm sure the people at the Hotel on the Cay weren't told either. The vehichle that stopped at the marina was a safari bus. I'm not sure who had the passengers that went to the Cay. (safari or van)

Edited to say I looked at what I wrote and put it wrong the way the contract states. Sorry Juanita.

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Posted : January 19, 2009 10:12 am
antillean
(@antillean)
Advanced Member

LOL - don't stop the carnival!

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Posted : January 19, 2009 12:14 pm
Neil
 Neil
(@Neil)
Trusted Member

What a JOKE! Another cruise ship docking to the island of misfits again............All the stores will be closed, taxi drivers will continue raping & pillaging, more disappointed cruise passengers, more refunds & soon STX will once again be REMOVED from the cruise stops!!!!!!!!!!
I completely understand Tuesday will be a history making day with Obama being sworn in..................history will also be made as we continue to IGNORE & DISRESPECT our visitors............this isn't a field of dreams....we built the pier in the silly belief they would come.......well finally they did (with deJohns help) & now we're all just too busy to be bothered with them!!!!! Why can't we be joyful about Obama's big day & celebrate it with others from around the globe while inviting them to relish our lil island?
Guess change is coming.............we're changing this place right back to the eyesore of the Caribbean *SIGH* I had such hi-hopes, once again reality bonks me in the head.....aaaahhhhhh the good ole USVI.

Wow, islandtyme.
Really, the sky ain't fallin.

All these 'problems' just seem like typical startup jitters and easily fixed mis-communications.

As a cruise veteran, I thought to scan the cruise critic message boards. I found some positive and negative posts from recent cruise visitors. Here's one in particular worth reading. http://74.125.113.132/search?q=cachewww.passporterboards.com/forums/sharing-your-adventure-disney-cruise-reports/181853-st-croix.html+cruise+message+board+st+croix&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=6

That said.... having cruised the Carib several times, and living here on StX, I'm not sure StX is ever going to be a huge favorite among the cruisers. I just don't think we're "exotic" enough for many cruise vacationers ...not compared to some other stops. Yes, we have some beautiful beaches and rainforest, but you can get similar elsewhere. Cruisers looking for shopping won't be astounded either. What we may be able to do is surprise a few folks, and encourage others to come back for a stay. So many statesiders don't even know the USVI exists or where it's located.

Anybody know the "route" taken by taxis to C'sted? I heard a driver on the radio describe going down Centerline when they couldn't get into Cruzan Rum, and thought to myself, "why would you bring visitors down Centerline?" Not the most direct route, but if I were bringing people from Fsted to Csted and wanted to show them the island, I'd cut up and over the Beast and wind them down the northshore road. I'm sure the local drivers are proud to show off the schools, (which the driver mentioned) but after UVI and Complex it's downhill from there and time for a quick left turn. (Central H.S. on Centerline looks like a prison. Note to Principal/Admin: pick up your trash and take some pride in your campus)

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Posted : January 19, 2009 12:55 pm
Ronnie
(@ronnie)
Trusted Member

There are more than 300 taxis in St Croix. Maybe the association, not union, that has the contract for the dock only has 50 cabs. This does not prevent others from lurking around the corner to take fares. The excursions sold on the ship that include lunches are pre-sold and the restaurant is notified of how many are coming. Any other restaurant hat gets unexpected safari loads should be thankful and hopefully are prepared. They should talk to the cabbie that brought them to prearrange next time, so they can be prepared.
It seems like there are still forces out there trying to prevent cruise ships from returning. Try not to blame St Thomas.

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Posted : January 19, 2009 12:58 pm
Islander
(@the-islander)
Member Moderator

On a related note: Whim Plantation and Lawaetz Museum will be open tomorrow, 10-4. In their e-newsletter it says people that want to volunteer on cruse ship days please call the Landmarks Society office (772-0598) as they would like to be over-prepared.

--Islander

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Posted : January 19, 2009 6:13 pm
islandtyme
(@islandtyme)
Trusted Member

Neil........................Don't worry???? Sky has already fell mehson! :-X
Heres a QUOTE from your link....

"We just returned from the January 3-10, St. Croix Cruise. Not to put a damper on your vacation if that is where you are going, but everyone we talked to on the ship was very disappointed in St. Croix. We had friends that went over to Christiansted, and even said that it was not worth it. We ended up getting back on the ship and enjoyed the day on the ship. The only good thing I heard was people who went scuba diving and snorkling, they said it was beautiful. But other than that, I would never choose that itinerary. Fredericksted (where you dock) is very run down and not that much to do. The public beach there was full of broken glass, broken shells, and dirty....not many people went there."

Perhaps you do NOT work retail & this will not affect you,however I like a warm bed, full tummy & a couple bucks in the bank............

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Posted : January 19, 2009 6:31 pm
islandtyme
(@islandtyme)
Trusted Member

1st impressions are EVERLASTING & NO matter what we do from here on out, we've already failed miserably!
I read all 4 posts on that board & 2 were from folks that spent time @ the Buccaneer [YEARS AGO, 1 asking if anyone knew anything about our island & the most recent just raved about our filthy beaches, run down towns and snorkeling here was ok........YUP, sounds like everyone will flock here by the droves. :X

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Posted : January 19, 2009 6:53 pm
debraann
(@debraann)
Advanced Member

where can i buy that book?

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Posted : January 19, 2009 7:09 pm
Islander
(@the-islander)
Member Moderator

One cruise message board was mentioned and it had a negative review. Here is another message board and it has a couple positive reviews, one even starts with "loved it" and both had good things to say about Frederiksted Beach. http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=905042.

Didn't get to read the article, did it mention what the average total for refunds due to complaints is in general per port? Tried to find this on-line but was unsuccessful. Wanted to have a benchmark. Hopefully whatever issues caused the complaints got looked into and resolved.

--Islander

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Posted : January 19, 2009 8:56 pm
Islander
(@the-islander)
Member Moderator

where can i buy that book?

For the book Don't Stop the Carnival you can try some of the on island bookstores. Online try Amazon.com or Barnesandnoble.com.

--Islander

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Posted : January 19, 2009 8:59 pm
islandtyme
(@islandtyme)
Trusted Member

Thank you Islander for the vibe.........Sorry I get so worked up, but St Croix can only get so many 2nd chances before they turn the lights out & lock the doors & and hang a closed sign on the island.
Alas, some did find our tiny island in the sun beautiful & committed it "appeared" well organized............a glimmer of hope returns :$)

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Posted : January 19, 2009 10:00 pm
RockyDock
(@RockyDock)
Advanced Member

where can i buy that book?

For the book Don't Stop the Carnival you can try some of the on island bookstores. Online try Amazon.com or Barnesandnoble.com.

--Islander

Don't Stop the Carnival is a 1965 novel by American writer Herman Wouk about escaping middle-age crisis to the Caribbean. The 23rd Annual Water Island Auction will have, as an auction item, a copy of the book which Herman Wouk recently signed. Starting at 10am on Saturday, February 21, 2009 at Honeymoon Beach on Water Island, there will be a number of unique offerings related to the Virgin Islands.

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Posted : January 20, 2009 6:22 am
Sabrina
(@Sabrina)
Advanced Member

What happened to "Harbour Nights"? Isn't anything similar being planned for the Cruise Ship arrivals these days?

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Posted : January 20, 2009 4:50 pm
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