February 20, 2008
ORANJESTAD – It appears from the monthly report of the Central Bank of Aruba (CBA) that compared to December 2006, the room occupancy of the hotels as well as the number of cruise passengers dropped in the same month in 2007. Although the room occupancy of the hotels dropped in December, there was a growth in 2007.
Not only did the cruise passengers drop in December of 2007, but also the number of cruise ships that visited the island; with respectively 8.3 and 11.8 percent. Over the entire 2007, the number of cruise passengers dropped to 481.775, 18.5 percent less than in 2006 and the number of cruise ships remained that same as in 2006.
Aruba Tourism Authority (ATA) has not yet published the number of tourists that stayed on the island and those that just spent the night during August till December inclusive.
The CBA has therefore used the figures of AAA on the number of travelers that came to Aruba via air. These numbers increased for the first 11 months of 2007 with 9.8 percent. These figures only give an indication of a growth or drop in the tourism season, because the length of the stay was not considered.
February 23, 2008 It is hard to believe that it has been a year since the "forlorn group" depicted on page one of this chapter were protesting travel to Aruba at the Boston travel show.
Here is a video made by their fearless leader Observer
More from Observer
Still in Boston but wanted to give you a quick update. Day went well as we handed out all the literature, pens and most of the tote bags. Marlee, Hotshot and Gabriel all showed up today and it was nice to meet them. Heard much the same as last year from people as they will never go to Aruba, disgusted what the Aruban Govt has done and prayers for Natalee that she is found. Not quite the same as last year with the weather as it affected the turnout but it is quite clear the middle class Bostonians care very much for Natalee and her Family and some actually thanked us for coming out and supporting them. Looks like we will make it for day two as we are realize the importance of being a voice for Natalee at this event.
When we first arrived me and Hotshot did go to the Aruba booth and low and behold Mr. Rob Smith was there. I Introduced myself and told him my name and that I was from scaredmonkeys. He knew all about us of course, it is on video as I am sure it will probably be posted. Just a short chat and visited a nice lady that Manages one of the resorts in Aruba as we chatted with her last year. We were constantly harassed today by security and police and I was personally warned at least 6 times about the rules. We handed out quite a bunch of literature so they kept accusing us of handing it inside as well as other harassment's about the signs and so on. Didn't faze us one bit as obviously the Arubans were concerned about us, as they should be with the Amount of money they paid for the Booth and being a major sponsor. All in all I am glad I made it and like I said last year it was worth every second of my time. We made a difference, the signs were great and hopefully the weather and day is better tomorrow.