Mazatlan Tourism Lashes Out at Cruise Lines’ Port Call Cancellations
The Mazatlan Tourism Trust has issued a response to the cancellation of several cruise lines’ port calls to the destination. Specifically, tourism officials there are speaking out about the safety of the destination and how the incidents were reported, and urging travel agents to put the recent events into perspective.
“We understand that travel agents and providers have a duty to inform their customers, but we feel as if we have been unfairly singled out as an unsafe destination,” said Julio Birrueta, spokesperson for the Mazatlan Tourism Trust. “Perhaps the recent incidents have received critical attention because we are so widely regarded as one of the safest destinations in Mexico. I’ve lived in Mazatlan all my life, and it makes me very sad that the warm hospitality of our people and Mazatlan’s reputation as a vacation destination is being eroded.”
Birrueta noted that several recent developments underscore the popularity of the destination and emphasize the commitment of Mazatlan’s tourism community to visitors. For example, Mazatlan welcomed more than 300,000 revelers from across the globe to its annual carnival celebration, March 3 to 8. This week, new nonstop flights between Dallas-Fort Worth and Mazatlan on American Eagle commenced. Aeromexico is increasing capacity from Mexico City, while Sunwing will continue flights from Toronto and other Canadian gateways.
According to tourism officials, the additions increase Mazatlan’s airlift by 20 percent over 2010. The average passenger load for all flights into Mazatlan has increased by 7 percent in January and February 2011, over the same period last year. Groups and conventions are also up 20 percent from last year, while hotel reservations for Easter week are up 30 percent over 2010 numbers.
Mazatlan hosts nearly 2 million visitors from around the world each year, and the number has increased steadily for the past five years. Additionally, nearly 9,000 U.S. and Canadian citizens have made Mazatlan their permanent or seasonal home between October and April, according to the Mazatlan Tourism Trust.
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