RCI-Royal Caribbean cancels May cruises to Labadee Haiti amid escalating security concerns

   April 25, 2024 ,   Accidents

Amid escalating security concerns in Haiti, RCI-Royal Caribbean has extended its cancellation of all scheduled cruises to Labadee Haiti throughout the entire May.

This decision comes as a response to the persistent political instability and violence plaguing Haiti.

Gang-related incidents have been on the rise, prompting warnings from the US State Department advising against travel to certain areas of Haiti since July 2023. The situation worsened in late February following political tensions surrounding Prime Minister Ariel Henry's diplomatic trip to Kenya. Despite efforts to establish a transitional presidential council, delays have hindered its formation.

With airports closing and flights being disrupted, Royal Caribbean has taken proactive measures to ensure the safety of its guests and crew. Labadee, although leased by Royal Caribbean, remains under Haitian jurisdiction. A spokesperson from the cruise line emphasized the importance of monitoring the situation closely and prioritizing the security of all involved parties. Affected ships, including Allure of the Seas, Adventure of the Seas, Wonder of the Seas, and Symphony of the Seas, will adjust their itineraries accordingly. Some passengers may enjoy extended days at sea, while others will visit Royal Caribbean's private resort in the Bahamas, Perfect Day at CocoCay.

Beyond the impact on tourism, the turmoil in Haiti has had devastating humanitarian consequences, particularly for children. According to Unicef, ~3 million Haitian children are in urgent need of humanitarian aid. Port-au-Prince, the capital, has become a battleground, with reports of gang violence leading to the destruction of homes and the mass release of prisoners. The crisis has exacerbated food insecurity, with thousands of people displaced from their homes due to ongoing violence, as reported by the UN.