The sun is shining today in Vanuatu as the clean-up continues across Vanuatu after two back to back cyclones in early March. Communities and businesses have been quick to get to work on the cleaning up and it is amazing to see how quickly things are getting back to normal.
Currently, rapid assessments are being undertaken across the 83 islands to ensure the people of Vanuatu have the essential services they need and to assist the Vanuatu government to prioritize the work that needs to be done.
The Port Vila International Airport has been cleared for commercial operations from Monday morning 06th March. Air Vanuatu and all other Airlines are currently in contact with their passengers with new flight schedules and arrangements. We are also excited to welcome Virgin Australia back to the Vanuatu skies soon. A new date will be released soon for the Vanuatu launch.
“While we are still ascertaining the full impacts on the tourism industry across the country, it seems that many of our operators are already back up and running or some cleanup underway. The Vanuatu Tourism Office is working with the Industry & Stakeholders to provide up-to-date information as it comes to hand,” says Vanuatu Tourism Office CEO, Ms Adela Aru.
The Port Agents are now working with the Cruise Lines Companies to prepare approval for cruise berthing in Port Vila as well as some diversion for ships to Luganville, Santo. New cruise itineraries will be finalized and published once approval is given.
The island of Espiritu Santo did not experience the full force of the cyclones. Santo is in operation with properties now cleaning up debris and opening their doors once more for business. They are awaiting some telecommunication networks to come back with damages only to the southern part of the Island.
“We know those visitors who have been in Vanuatu over the last week have not had the holiday they expected. To our tourism industry operators, thank you for your patience and good humor as we worked with the range of challenges presented,’ said Ms Aru.
The dual cyclones have left a mark across the islands with the winds taking many of the trees and leaving with them, so there is a big clean-up job to be done. Port Vila town center has been cleared of debris and restaurants and shops are now re-opening.
Some essential services are still to be restored across pockets of Port Vila and the assessment teams are yet to report on the broader archipelago.
We have been touched by messages from across the globe and people wanting to know how they can help. Naturally, as the Vanuatu Tourism Office, we would say – book a holiday.
We are also thankful to the International Community which has deployed support to many of Vanuatu’s remote areas.