Cruise-Ship Tourists Visit Haiti

She said that the profits from any shore excursion, jet ski ride, the zip line or any alcohol sold there will go for relief, "a couple of thousands of dollars."

Royal Caribbean has already pledged at least $1 million in humanitarian relief to Haiti by partnering with charitable organizations including Food for the Poor, Pan American Development Foundation and the cruise line's foundation in Haiti, the Solano Foundation.

Each ship is also bringing in 40 to 80 pallets of supplies including, water, powered milk, rice, dried beans and canned goods which are then distributed by the charities.

Stewart Chiron, president of CruiseGuy.com, a travel marketing group specializing in the cruise industry, said that Royal Caribbean made the right decision.

"It was very important for them to begin visiting the island again and begin pouring money back into the local economy," Chiron said. "If they had pulled out of there and gone to another port or another day at sea … I think they would have been chastised 100 times greater. Without a question of a doubt, this was by far the best thing that Royal Caribbean could have done."

Chiron said Royal Caribbean's resort is far removed from the earthquake zone and tourists won't even realize where they are.

"It's a very, very secluded part of the island," he said.

Cruise Ships Visit Haiti Despite Earthquake

Carolyn Spencer Brown, editor of Cruise Critic, also noted that most of the people where the ships are docking have not been victims of the earthquake.

"Let's not victimize them further by staying away," Brown said. "Maybe, for passengers whose ships call at Labadee, the island experience won't be a tropical play-day but a way to support the Haitians who work there, and whose souvenirs and trinkets are for sale there. It's an opportunity to put down the pina colada and make an effort to talk with the Haitians, connect, hear their stories, learn something about their culture."

She added that during a taxi ride Saturday in Miami, her driver was, of all things, from Labadee.

"I asked him: how do Haitians feel about a cruise ship coming back so soon," she said.

His response: "it's still crucial for people there to keep working, to have some sense of normalcy, and that the country needs any supplies it can get."

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