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Provo Airport handling hundreds of tourists on Saturdays – officials say it is mostly sweet

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Providenciales, 05 Jun 2015 – Houston’s inaugural flight landed on Saturday at the Provo International, but stealing the thunder of that new commute was the hundreds of visitors arriving almost simultaneously for their TCI vacations. As many as nine airliners were on the ground Saturday and it seemed the International Arrivals area was going to burst at its seams with so many visitors getting in to Providenciales at one time. Saturday is the busiest day for the country’s gateway – Providenciales International Airport – and as hundreds filed in to be processed by Immigration, collect their bags at the one baggage carousel and file through Customs – it seemed an awful mess, but Lavern Reynolds, Terminal and Marketing Manager with the TCI Airports Authority assured things were under control.

“I don’t think it is overwhelming. I think it is one of those things whereby we have to put all of our ducks in a row; we have other partners that we are working along with which is Customs, as well as Immigration and the airlines and the other entities within the airport itself. I think it’s wonderful for us to be able to keep busy and give them work pretty much, all year round. So I think it keeps us on our toes because you might get a bit relaxed in the off season and then you have to speed things up for the winter season; this way you keep yourself at a very busy pace, all year round.”

Ralph Higgs, Tourist Board Director, was pleased with the processing speed of TCI Border Control but said, there is some work to be done.

“Today is clearly a very busy day. A very impressive eight or nine jets are on their airport at the same time, I think that speaks to a lot of positive things but it also speaks to situations that we must internally address as quickly as we can. Sometimes success can present challenges and we are very cognizant of that, and we will continue grow as we try to mitigate the challenges that growth brings.”

There was reportedly a disgruntled guest who posted a long waiting time on the arrivals side in Provo on social media; but President of the Hotel & Tourism Association, Michel Nuetelings said there have been no complaints officially.

“It would be better if they were spaced out, but I think we the airport expansion things are a lot smoother than they used to be and I think everyone is putting in every single effort possible to make it work. Now you always have a few people who may complain about it but I think we know how to turn those around in our hotels and in the various services they get to, they know how to turn that around and make sure people leave here with a memorable experience.”

It was unknown what the average processing time per guest family is at the PIA. Later, hear what Minister of Tourism, Porsha Smith and other delegates had to say about that inaugural flight from Houston which touched down Saturday in Provo.

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Health

Woman dies on Tuesday; 32nd Covid Death for Turks & Caicos

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#TurksandCaicos, January 20, 2022 – The Turks and Caicos has recorded its 32nd death related to COVID-19.

A Ministry of Health press release informed that the individual who was in quarantine in Grand Turk and requested emergency aid on Tuesday; response came from the public health team in Grand Turk.

The person, who we are told is a special needs young woman – was unvaccinated and had underlying medical conditions.

The death rate in the Turks and Caicos of both vaccinated and unvaccinated persons has climbed alarmingly this year.  In the 21-month period from March 2020 when the country recorded its first case to December 2021, there were 26 deaths recorded in the TCI.

In the 19 days since the start of 2022 that number has increased to 32; which means six deaths already in January.

 

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Bahamas News

Cruising should slow down says PAHO

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

‘Slow down on Cruising’, that’s the word from the Pan American Health Organization, PAHO in their latest recent press conference.

Dr. Ciro Ugarte Director of Health Emergencies at the PAHO was referring to the Bahamas but made sure to note that the advice was highly relevant to many countries in the times of omicron.

“In the context of intense transmission, due to the Omicron variant as we have highlighted several times. It is just logical to suspend or at least limit the cruise ship traffic as an outbreak on board might end up exceedingly high and probably will go beyond the capacity of local health services”

Both the Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos are experiencing a massive uptick in cases and several warnings regarding cruise travel have been issued by the US Centers for Disease Control.

Cruising just resumed for many regional countries this past Summer, Turks and Caicos was among the latest to restart on December 13.

A stop to sailing would be devastating to economies, however, ports of call like Grand Turk which are reeling with rocketing case numbers of COVID are urged to consider the suggestion of slowing down on ships by PAHO.

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Caribbean News

Cayman gets its second ‘Sir’; former Premier Alden McLaughlin knighted on Jan 1

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#Cayman, January 20, 2022 – Former Premier of Cayman Alden McLaughlin was knighted at the start of 2022; named in the Queen’s New Year Honors List. He is only the second Caymanian to have ever received a knighthood from her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

Sir Vassel Johnson, received the honour in 1994; he was Cayman’s first Financial Secretary; he died in November 2008 at the age of 86.

Current Governor, Martyn Roper extended congratulations saying, “This is an outstanding personal achievement for former Premier McLaughlin, one of the most important and impactful political leaders in Cayman over the last 21 years. It is a significant moment for our islands. This historic award is only the second ever Knighthood to a Caymanian since the first in the 1990s. It is a strong signal of the respect in which Cayman is held and a visible demonstration of the progress Cayman has made as a vibrant democracy with strong good governance foundations.”

Sir McLaughlin, who is also now a QC attorney, served two terms as premier and had a career in politics that spanned 21 years. McLaughlin is known for his role in modernizing Cayman’s constitution.

Current premier G. Wayne Panton described the occasion as a unifying moment for the country saying, This is a day of celebration and great pride for all Caymanians as a son of our soil has been bestowed one of the highest honour.  Today marks a new and most unique storyline in the history of the Cayman Islands.  In considering the rarity and magnitude of this occasion, this is certainly a unifying moment for our community.”

Sir Alden McLaughlin, 60, was appointed as a Knight Commander of the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George on January 1, 2022.

 

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