Hurricane Dorian, a Category 5 storm, has devastated The Bahamas, leaving 43 people dead and more than 70,000 homeless. To help the islands recover, donations are needed to provide food and shelter to the victims. However, not all parts of the island have been as severely affected. Therefore, another way to help the nation rebuild is to plan a visit in the near future since the country’s main industry remains tourism.
The Bahamas, a coral-based archipelago in the Atlantic, includes more than 700 islands and cays that range from uninhabited to resort-filled. The northernmost, Grand Bahama, and Paradise Island, home to many first-rate hotels, are among the most popular, while scuba divers and snorkelers are drawn to the Andros Barrier Reef, Thunderball Grotto and the black-coral gardens off Bimini.
Although it may seem insensitive to think about enjoying a vacation while thousands struggle to simply survive, the Bahamian economy depends upon tourism, and funds generated by visitors will be vital for the islands to get back on their feet.
Currently, hotels in the Abacos and Grand Bahama Island are closed now, but they only account for 15% of the country’s travel accommodations. The southeastern and central Bahamas have been far less affected by the hurricane, and hotels and resorts in the capital of Nassau and Paradise Island remain open, as do those on most of the country’s other islands and cays, including Eleuthera, Harbour Island and Andros, The Exumas, Cat Island, San Salvador, Rum Cay, Long Island, Acklins/Crooked Island, Ragged Island, Mayaguana and Inagua.
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@bahamasparadisecruiseline - Bahamas, we’re still with you. Thank you very much, everyone, for your incredible generosity. Every donation we’ve received so far has significantly helped in our mission to bring relief and aid to our brothers and sisters on Grand Bahama Island—our beloved second home. Together with first responders and volunteers, we were able to provide Bahamian residents with food, water, personal hygiene products, medical equipment, generators, and other desperately-needed supplies. We also welcomed over 1,550 hurricane evacuees aboard our Grand Celebration Humanitarian Cruise ship sailing back to West Palm Beach. Relief and recovery efforts are far from over though. We still have an urgent call for donations! Please continue sending aid supplies to: Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line Riviera Beach Warehouse 301 Broadway Ave., Bay #7 Riviera Beach, FL 33404
For travelers that have made plans to go to any of these islands, they should keep their reservations. As of now, Grand Bahama International Airport, Grand Bahama Island's Freeport Harbour and Leonard Thompson International Airport (MHH) in Marsh Harbour, Abaco are closed, but Nassau’s Lynden Pindling International Airport (LPIA) is open. Airlines like Delta, American Airlines, Southwest, JetBlue, Spirit, United, and Frontier are currently offering the option to change or delay flight bookings in affected areas, with certain terms and conditions applying. Nassau ports are also open to welcome cruise ships, though schedules may have been changed.