I never know how to start writing again after a natural disaster takes place. Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria caused damage throughout many areas of the Caribbean, Puerto Rico and Florida – each a place where I have personal connections. And as with all hurricanes, some islands were devasted with long roads ahead, while other areas received minor damage or completely untouched.
Figuring out how and when to talk travel again has been weighing heavy on my mind for weeks. But, as I woke up this morning, there was an overwhelming feeling that NOW is the perfect time to talk about traveling. And it all comes down to tourism.
Tourism is a vital industry to the Caribbean. From jobs, steady income and normalcy, we can also show our support by way of visiting their areas too. It may take time for some of them to be up to full speed, but for those that were unaffected and those that are still in the rebuilding stages, they’ll come back, but only with our support.
The people of the Caribbean thrive on visitors coming to their islands on vacation. From dining in their restaurants, staying in hotels, shopping, spending the day with tour guides and being a part of the community — tourism is the number one industry for many in the Caribbean. With visitors returning, locals can return to work, which in turn means receiving a paycheck and stability in a time that has been so uncertain.
In addition to showing support in the form of monetary donations and sending hard goods, plan a trip. Whether it is next month or next summer — these areas will need our help for much of the time to come.
There are so many areas of the Caribbean ready to welcome visitors — they need our support. From the Bahamas to Grand Cayman, Costa Maya, Belize, Key West and more, let’s help them. And when Puerto Rico, St. Thomas, St. Croix and others are ready, let’s be there to support them too.