Cruise Port in Maine Votes To Limit Cruise Ship Guests

At most, one thousand cruise ship passengers and crew can be allowed to disembark a cruise ship whereas in port in Bar Harbor, Maine, from 2024. This was the result of a vote within the quaint seaside city on the Atlantic Coast on Tuesday, November 8. 

The choice from residents will seemingly not be welcomed by the cruise business, as Bar Harbor performs an important function in the course of the common autumn cruises to New England and Canada.

Whereas cruise ships play an vital function in bringing cash into the native economic system, greater than 55% of residents stated in 2021 that cruise ships have a unfavourable influence in town. 

1,000 Cruise Ship Customer Restrict

A petition that was voted on November 8 in Bar Harbor, Maine, had a really unwelcome impact on the cruise business. Residents voted on November 8 to limit the variety of guests from cruise ships to the city to a most of 1000 per day. 

The petition, introduced ahead by Bar Harbor resident Charles Sidman, had 3098 voters casting ballots out of 5016 registered voters, a 61.7% turnout. The whole was 1780 voting in favor of the ban and 1273 towards the ban. “There’s a huge and deep feeling within the city that we have now been overrun by cruise ship visitors,” Sidman stated earlier this summer season.

Photograph Credit score: Eric Jeremiah photographs / Shutterstock

The sensation from locals isn’t a surprise. Again in 2021, a survey discovered that the majority locals had been sad concerning the variety of ships coming to Bar Harbor. 55% of respondents stated cruise ship tourism is extra unfavourable than constructive for Bar Harbor. Solely 35% understand it as extra constructive than unfavourable.

The standard of life additionally was perceived to go down by 53% of respondents as a result of influence of cruise tourism, whereas solely 26% stated they perceived it as constructive. Cruise ships would even be detrimental to the general really feel and picture that Bar Harbor tries to convey. 

Bar Harbor already had a ban for cruise ship passengers, limiting visitors to three,500 per day in the summertime and 5,500 in the course of the early and late elements of the cruise season. With simply over 5,000 residents, the variety of folks within the city doubled throughout giant cruise ship visits. 

Earlier than the worldwide pause in operations, the cruise business contributed $68 million in direct financial spending and created over 1,000 jobs in Maine, amounting to $36 million in wages. A second plan, drafted by Bar Harbor city supervisor Kevin Sutherland, didn’t make it to the vote. 

What Will Occur to Cruises Scheduled to Bar Harbor?

Cruise strains have thus far not responded, however cruise business foyer group CLIA will seemingly accomplish that within the coming days, doubtlessly trying on the ramifications of the Bar Harbor petition. In April of this 12 months, CLIA launched a press launch stating the significance of Maine for the cruise business:

“Maine is a marquee New England vacation spot providing spectacular surroundings, leisure alternatives, and terrific delicacies, and in addition serves because the gateway to the US and a port of name alongside the best way to and from locations in Canada, the Caribbean, and past for ocean-going cruise ships,” stated Kelly Craighead, President and CEO of Cruise Traces Worldwide Affiliation.

Bar Harbor, Maine
Photograph Credit score: Darryl Brooks / Shutterstock

Eighty-four cruise ships with a passenger capability of 1,000 or extra friends are scheduled for cruise calls to Bar Harbor between Might and November subsequent 12 months. Nonetheless, these will seemingly not be impacted by the vote. 

The petition permits for a gradual transition, which signifies that any cruise ship calls booked earlier than the spring of 2022, which is almost all of calls, can be allowed to proceed as deliberate. 

From 2024, the brand new guidelines will apply to all cruise ships. This may imply that bigger ships would nonetheless have the ability to go to Bar Harbor, however just one,000 friends and crew could be allowed off the ship. Cruise firms will seemingly bypass Bar Harbor fully, opting to go to ports akin to Portland, or ports in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, Canada.

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