Cruise Ship Halts Tour To Help Those Affected By Hurricane Irma
For many, a cruise around the Caribbean is a once-in-a-lifetime trip. Taking in the sights and crystal-clear waters of the likes of Barbados, Bermuda, and Jamaica.
Sadly, earlier this month, several locations were ripped apart by hurricanes Irma and Maria, which left many holiday destinations in ruin, and the entire island of Puerto Rico without power.
Many cruise companies depend on the Caribbean for trade, but after the recent devastation, Royal Caribbean has flipped the rule book and is now sending its ships to support the victims of the natural disaster.
The cruise company has cancelled an upcoming trip in order to send one of their fleet to Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, reports the Telegraph.
Adventure of the Seas, which was scheduled to depart from San Juan, Puerto Rico, and sail to several other islands, will now remain in dock and also visit St Thomas and St Croix (of the US Virgin Islands) to help with the hurricane relief effort.
The huge cruise liner, which stands a 1,020ft long, weighs 137,276 tons, and can carry 3,114 passengers, will donate supplies as well as help to pick up evacuees, transferring them to Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Those who were booked on the original cruise will receive a full refund, as well as 25 percent off their next trip if they rebook in the next 30 days.
Royal Caribbean has also dispatched their Majesty of the Sea and Empress of the Seas ships to help with the relief efforts. So far, around 1,700 people have been evacuated.
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CEO Michael Bayley told the Miami Herald earlier this month: "We have been such a part of the Caribbean and South Florida communities for so many decades. We are worried and anxious.
"At the end of the day, we want to try to help as much as we can."
The two hurricanes left Puerto Rico without power, something that is expected to continue for several months.
The Department of Defence said approximately 44 percent of the population is without drinking water, with others struggling for food and clothing.
Norwegian Cruise Line, which sends ships to St Thomas and St Maarten, has also offered to help residents and has matched donations of up to $1.25m (£933,000). Royal Caribbean did the same, matching up to $1m (£740,000).
Carnival, another cruise company, has sent a fleet of 11 ships to assist the relief efforts also.
On Tuesday, San Juan Mayor, Carmen Yulin Cruz, stated that islanders had experienced 'near-death conditions' and described it as 'apocalyptic'.
Featured Image Credit: Royal Caribbean
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