SAN JUAN -- The
Puerto Rico Tourism Co. (PRTC) started an incentive program
designed to boost cruise arrivals and assuage cruise lines upset by
an increase in port fees implemented July 1.
program is retroactive to that date and will run through fiscal
the PRTCs director of marketing and global operations, said the
program has the stamp of approval of the Florida Caribbean Cruise
Association (FCCA) and member cruise lines.
This took a long
time to negotiate and several months of research. We studied a
variety of possible programs and plans, said Rocafort.
The Puerto Rico
Ports Authority increased port fees from $10.30 to $13.25 per
passenger last April, with a July 1 effective date. The $10.30 fee
had been in effect since 1996.
would avoid Puerto Rico as a port of call as a result of the fee
hike, the PRTC worked with the FCCA and cruise lines to develop
incentives to keep the port competitive.
For the current
fiscal year, which runs through June 30, cruise lines calling in
San Juan are offered three different incentives:
incentive of $2.95 is paid to the cruise line for each passenger
who visits San Juan, which effectively wipes out the fee increase
for the cruise line.
Each ship is
paid a $2 incentive for each visiting passenger between 10,000 and
139,999, and $4.50 for each passenger over the 140,000
Each ship will
be offered a 10% discount toward food and beverages purchased
welcomed more than 1.2 million passengers last year, up 2.6% over
2002. Passengers this year will total about 1.4 million, Rocafort
reporter Gay Nagle Myers, send e-mail to [email protected].