A delegation of Disney Cruise Line officials have been in the British Virgin Islands this week to meet with local government officials including the Minister for Communications and Works, Honourable Mark Vanterpool to discuss quality guest service culture, process training, marketing and promotional services for the Territory.
You may recall, part of the berthing agreement DCL signed earlier this year included a clause to provide hospitality and customer service training to the British Virgin Islands to better serve all cruise passengers visiting the territory. The agreement also stipulates that DCL will market the territory through each companies’ marketing arms worldwide.
A report from the Caribbean Journal reaffirmed earlier reports that Disney Cruise Line portion of the berthing agreement guarantees they will bring 75,000 passengers per year. The article went on to state, the British Overseas Territory officially broke ground on a major expansion of its cruise pier, aiming to be ready to receive them. It is unclear if the use of them is specifically DCL or either DCL or NCL.
There is some additional information to share with regard to DCL future plans to add Tortola as a port of call. An article from mid-May stated that the required work on the pier expansion to accommodate the needs of DCL and NCL is estimated to be completed by January 2015. The most interesting part of this article was a statement by the managing director of the BVI Ports Authority, Claude Skelton Cline. In the article, Cline states, “that one side of the pier has to be completed for Disney’s Fantasy ship on Jan. 7, with the other side needing to be complete for NCL’s Breakaway on April 29, 2015.” However, a week later DCL announced their Fall 2015 itineraries which did not include Tortola, except for the brief mention in the brochure which was eventually corrected.
As of right now, the current pier cannot accommodate either the Disney Fantasy or Norwegian Getaway which are both 4000 passenger cruise ships until previously mentioned work on the one side is completed. Necessary accommodations, could be the primary reason DCL is not ready to commit to Tortola at this time.