Virgin Islands anticipate 30% tourism drop

Tree07 The economic slump is hitting the islands hard, to judge by the Department of Tourism’s budget estimates for the next year.  DOT has told the VI Senate it needs $4.38 million, half of which is for personnel.  None of it is for advertising and marketing the islands.

“Fringe benefits” add another $727,252 in costs, according to a report by the Virgin Islands Daily News.  (Read the full story here.)

The Inquiring Iguana thinks this is wacky, at least.  Fringe benefits add another 36% to costs.  Must be one hell of a company picnic.  Some researchers say 11% is more the norm.

But, back to business.  Tourism said it expects to receive $13.6 million from the Revolving Fund.  That comes from the 8% Hotel Tax you pay when you stay on St. John.  Commissioner Beverly  Nicholson-Doty told the Senators her department expects 30% less marketing dollars as a result of fewer visitors.  She said she’ll have to be more “savvy and efficient.”

Anyone doubt that. despite this, the police will still get new SUVs?

2 thoughts on “Virgin Islands anticipate 30% tourism drop”

  1. that stimulus money should go to subsidize the airlines so they can offer $ 299 round trip airfare to STT from the states.
    that would help tourism
    for september, the slowest month, make it $ 99 each way.
    john gallagher/boston

  2. Dear Frank:
    I have never understood the ferry system. Ticket prices keep going up without in my opinion, factual operating cost.
    In Texas the Port Aransas auto/passenger ferry is FREE. Thats right, FREE!
    I’ve used it many times, believe it is run by Texas DOT. See below short article – link would not work
    THE FERRY
    The Port Aransas Ferry System provides FREE transportation service seven days a week, twenty-four hours a day. The ride connects Mustang Island and Port Aransas with the mainland via Aransas Pass. The number of ferry boats in service at any time depends on demand. Each of the six large vessels are identical in construction and design. The vessels carry twenty regular passenger vehicles on each trip. Each boat can move 100 vehicles per hour.
    Want to boost St. John tourism? Give free service.

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