The Bahamas archipelago was headed for another strong tourism year prior to Hurricane Dorian’s arrival in early September. While areas most popular with American visitors, including New Providence (home to Nassau) and Paradise Island, were spared, residential and tourist areas in Abaco and Grand Bahama Island suffered a devastating loss of life and catastrophic infrastructure damage.
Disaster Relief Funds
Officials at numerous Caribbean groups are organizing support for Bahamas residents affected by the hurricane. The Caribbean Tourism Organization activated its Hurricane Relief Fund, established to assist Caribbean nations rebuild following disasters. The Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association launched an online auction via bidding firm Charitybuzz to help “support the long-term recovery of the northwestern islands of the Bahamas,” said officials in a statement.
In addition to New Providence and Paradise Island, the majority of Bahamian destinations, including commonly visited islands—among them the Exumas, Eleuthera, Harbour Island, Bimini, Andros, The Berry Islands, Cat Island—were not affected by Dorian.
How to Help
The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism and Aviation is encouraging travelers to visit these regions. “Maintaining a robust tourism industry will be vital in helping the country to recover and rebuild,” said Dionisio D’Aguilar, the Bahamas’ minister of tourism and aviation. “We would like everyone to know the best thing they can do for us now is to visit Nassau, Paradise Island and the Out Islands,” he said.