With its return to Freeport, the company becomes the first cruise line to take leisure travelers back to Grand Bahama Island following Hurricane Dorian. The company is also inaugurating a second destination, Nassau, with sailings aboard its other ship, Grand Classica, beginning Oct. 12.
‘After ongoing discussions with the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, we are thrilled to have been given official approval to resume leisure cruises to Grand Bahama Island, as well as to introduce Nassau as a second destination for our guests,’ said Oneil Khosa, CEO of Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line.
Tourism helps economic recovery
‘Tourism is the most important industry in the Bahamas, and we all know the lifeline it brings to residents across the islands. While we remain focused on providing aid to our friends and family on Grand Bahama, we also know that returning to a traditional sailing schedule will make an incredibly positive impact on their economy.’
This follows two humanitarian missions by Grand Celebration, which became the first cruise ship to dock at Freeport after Dorian. The first mission was completed Sept. 7 and the second on Sept. 18.
Beginning Sept. 27, travelers can set sail from the Port of Palm Beach to Grand Bahama aboard Grand Celebration. Cruise fares start at $109 per person, with 50% off the price for the second passenger in the stateroom, for all sailings this fall.
Beach getaways to the island’s south side
In Freeport, travelers can take a beach getaway excursion to experience the south side of the island. There are long stretches of pristine sand, which forms into ripples at low tide. The tour will offer island-inspired food, Junkanoo-style entertainment and the opportunity to interact with the locals, known for their warm hospitality.
Or volunteer to rebuild
Travelers who wish to join the island’s rebuilding effort can instead participate in a volunteer excursion being planned by Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line with local organizations. Volunteer excursions are expected to include light manual labor, and as such, participants are required to wear athletic clothing and appropriate closed-toe footwear as a safety precaution.
Volunteer excursions must be requested and booked in advance, through Bahamas Paradise and its official partners only.
Plus, Bahamians currently in the United States and looking to return to the Bahamas can book a one-way sailing to Freeport aboard Grand Celebration at $105 per person, beginning with Friday’s departure. Bahamas Paradise said it will continue to deliver donated supplies from its warehouse to Freeport during future commercial sailings.
New Nassau program
Grand Classica, which has been operating away from the region since August, is currently on its way home from a one-time Western Caribbean and Panama Canal cruise and private group sailing.
Its new Palm Beach-Nassau cruises are priced starting at $159, round-trip, and open for booking Wednesday. Details on shore excursions will be available soon.
Bahamas Paradise's ‘Cruise & Stay Program’ will be added as an option in Nassau, as well. This packages a cruise with an all-inclusive vacation or a hotel stay at one of the line's partner resorts. Included are round-trip resort transfers, unlimited food and drinks at the all-inclusive properties, water sports, activities, and daily and nightly entertainment.
With the inaugural Nassau sailings, the line resumes its daily cruises from the Port of Palm Beach.
‘Our travel advisor partners have been asking for a second destination for quite some time, and Nassau has frequently come up in our discussions,’ said Francis Riley, SVP sales and marketing. ‘We are incredibly appreciative of the support and flexibility of our travel partners through Hurricane Dorian and pleased that now, we are able to bring them, and their clients, a unique new way to get away to Nassau.’