Basseterre, St. Kitts, September 6, 2021 (SKNIS): Minister of Tourism, the Honourable Lindsay Grant, said that the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis has been able to make significant strides in re-opening of the cruise tourism sector with the introduction of approved antigen tests.
Minister Grant during his Press Conference on September 6 stated that “This approval has allowed us to be more competitive as a cruise destination as we continue on our phased approach to rebuilding the cruise sector.”
“Regionally, internationally, and globally, we have recently seen many changes in the regional and global industries. We are now facing the highly transmissible delta variant that continues to propel surges across the globe,” Minister Grant said.
“Over the past few weeks, my team and I have engaged the cruise lines in discussion with a singular aim of bringing ships back to our shores and doing so safely,” he said.
He also said that as the northern hemisphere enters another winter season, the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis must expand the current cruise arrivals to supplement the air arrivals while the Federation continues to see easing in restrictions.
“My team and I in conjunction with the Ministry of Health and the COVID-19 Task Force have worked tirelessly over the past few weeks to identify cruise protocols that would allow us to continue to rebuild the cruise sector safely and expand the benefits of what has always been and is anticipated to be a lucrative industry,” the tourism minister said.
Some of these cruise protocols entail: 95 % of all crew on board the vessels must be fully vaccinated as per CDC guidelines; All guests 12 years and over must be vaccinated for COVID-19 with a WHO or an FDA approved vaccine in order for the ship to be allowed entry into the port and individuals are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after a single dose in a one-dose series and that is for the Johnson and Johnson or last dose in a two-dose series of the Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, Oxford- AstraZeneca, Sinopharm or Sinovac.