Puerto Rico Tourism Update: The Latest on Cruises, Flights and More

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Last week, Travel Agent brought you the status of every single hotel in Puerto Rico. Now, we break down the status of the rest of the destination's tourism products.

Cruise News

According to the Puerto Rico Tourism Company (PRTC), the San Juan Harbor is open and has resumed home porting operations. Beyond San Juan, the following ports are open with restrictions (daylight transit only): Guayanilla, Tallaboa, Salinas, Fajardo, Culebra, Vieques, Guayama and Mayaguez.

On November 10, Carnival Corporation’s cruise brands, including Carnival Cruise Line, Seabourn, Holland America Line, AIDA Cruises, Princess Cruises, Costa Cruises and P&O Cruises UK, all announced plans to return to San Juan from November 30 through December

The Carnival Conquest sailed into the port early November 30, marking the line’s first call at the destination since the hurricanes. Dozens more port calls are planned in San Juan over the coming weeks.

Also, on Thursday, the San Juan Port received around 7,000 tourists with the arrival of Freedom of the Seas from Royal Caribbean International.

Windstar Cruises' first sailing from San Juan since the storms was slated to depart November 25. Windstar is also offering travel agents a Caribbean Take 5 incentive offer that will net agents a complimentary cruise for booking five staterooms or suites on any Caribbean itinerary.

Flight News

The Luis Munoz Marin International Airport (SJU) is fully operational with scheduled domestic and international flights.

Other Puerto Rico airports that are operational and offering limited service include the Rafael Hernandez Airport (Aguadilla); the Mercedita Airport (Ponce); the Jose Aponte de la Torre Airport (Ceiba); the Fernando Luis Ribas Dominicci Airport (Isla Grande) and the Antonio Rivera Rodriguez Airport (Vieques).

Aside from Allegiant Air, which will resume flights on December 13, all major carriers to and from Puerto Rico are now operating, according to the PRTC. The carriers currently operating flights to and from the destination are American Airlines, Air Century, Air Sunshine, Air Flamenco, Avianca, Condor, Copa Airlines, Cap Air, Delta Air Lines, Frontier Airlines, JetBlue Airways, Liat, Pawa Dominicana, Seaborne Airlines, Southwest Airlines, Spirit Airlines, Sun Country Airlines, United Airlines, Vieques Air Link and Volaris.

Meetings and Incentives

According to a statement issued by the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA), Puerto Rico still plans to host one of the Caribbean's largest tourism marketing event in San Juan from January 30 to February 1, as officials work rapidly to prepare hotels and meeting facilities impacted by the recent hurricanes.

CHTA President Karolin Troubetzkoy said Caribbean hoteliers, destination representatives and industry stakeholders who rely on doing business with the region will have a unique opportunity to learn about the region's diverse offerings, new products, improvements and upgrades, and niche market opportunities. 

The Puerto Rico Convention Center will see an array of meetings between hotel and destination representatives, online travel agents, tour operators and MICE planners with a busy program of thousands of pre-scheduled appointments. Marketplace 2018 will also see a wider range of suppliers eager to promote their new contributions to this fast growing sector.

The event opens on the evening of Tuesday, January 30, preceded by educational sessions earlier in the day. Details about registration can be found at www.chtamarketplace.com/registration-fees.

Also, Travel Agent spoke with a representative of Meet Puerto Rico, who confirmed that the 25th annual FCCA Cruise Conference & Trade Show in San Juan is still slated to run from November 5-9, 2018. The rest of Meet Puerto Rico's calendar, which can be accessed by clicking here, is also still intact. 

Dining

More than 1,718 restaurants, including franchises, are open for business in the Condado, Old San Juan and Santurce areas. 

Casinos

According to the PRTC, 77 percent of Puerto Rico’s casinos, or 14 out of 18, are now open. Seven of the 14 that are open are now operating 24 hours. 

Ground Transportation

Ground transportation is operating as usual, according to the PRTC, with 55 tour operators open for business with the capacity of service for 6,172 passengers. Also, 24 major car rental companies are open for business, with 84 dealers distributed throughout the island.

Entertainment

The Hollywood Reporter is reporting that “Hamilton” star Lin-Manuel Miranda will reprise his lead role as Alexander Hamilton in a limited engagement of the hit musical in Puerto Rico.

According to the report, Hamilton will run from January 8-27, 2019, at Teatro UPR, the theater at the University of Puerto Rico’s main campus in the Rio Piedras section of San Juan

Built in 1939, Teatro UPR is considered Puerto Rico’s most iconic stage, and recently hosted Spanish language productions of Evita, Into the Woods, Master Class, The Sound of Music and Once on This Island, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

Visit www.seepuertorico.com and keep visiting www.travelagentcentral.com for all your latest travel news. Be sure to follow Travel Agent’s Joe Pike on Twitter @TravelPike and Instagram @pike5260.

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