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City wants to ban cruise ships amid ‘overwhelming’ tourist overrun

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They’re delivering a stern warning.

Fed up with thousands of tourists turning up in literal boatloads nearly every day during the warmer months, Juneau, Alaska is taking drastic measures.

Politicians in the 49th state’s capital city are preparing to vote in “ship free Saturdays” — which would bar cruise ships with over 250 people from coming to port that weekend day, plus the Fourth of July.

Alaska is mulling over a ban on cruise ships because of ire from locals. AP

“It’s about preserving the lifestyle that keeps us in Juneau, which is about clean air, clean water, pristine environment and easy access to trails, easy access to water sports and nature,” resident Deborah Craig told the Associated Press, as to why she supports the concept.

She added that her neighbors in the city with a population of 32,000 aren’t trying to be unfriendly — they’ve just dealt with too many tourists taking advantage of its natural beauty.

Locals in Juneau are vastly outnumbered by tourists during the summer months. AP

“It’s about volume. It’s about too much — too many in a short period of time overwhelming a small community.”

This is only the latest tourism pushback from hotspot destinations as travel volume continues to hit historic highs.

Locals in Barcelona, Spain resorted to spraying foreigners with water guns as an aggressive keep-out method while Fuji, Japan recently blocked views of its iconic mountain.

An influx of cruise ships is wearing out locals in Juneau, Alaska. AP

Bar Harbor, Maine also tried to cap cruise arrivals, but opponents have dragged the town into federal court.

However, shop owners like Laura McDonnell in Juneau don’t belhieve this is for the best.

McDonnell, who makes 98% of her revenue during tourist time told AP that having visitors is about “local businesses that rely on cruise passengers and our place in the community.”

Tourists, coming to see Alaska’s natural beauty, are pushing locals to their limits. AP

“I think that as a community, we really need to look at what’s at stake for our economy.”

Juneau’s “ship free Saturdays” bill will be voted on October 1 — unless unlikely action regarding the proposal is taken by August 15.

Read More: City wants to ban cruise ships amid ‘overwhelming’ tourist overrun

2024-07-08 21:47:00

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