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The "ferry" MS Pinar del Rio (ES) which was originally supposed to start operating between Port Everglades,FL and Grand Bahama on December 06, 2011 did not start.  Waterfront gossip is that they have had a delay in qualifying for the USCG Passenger Certificate to operate from a United States Port. 

When NAUTICAL LOG tried to book on both December 06 and 07, 2011 we had no luck and no information just "Please be informed we do not have the service REQUESTED".  Their website is not particularly user friendly and the fares seem to change by trip and day travelled. Also they are much more expensive than advertised with the addition of an "operational fee" of $25.00.   For a weekend trip this would work out too, after adding up all the fares and fees we could figure out,  $193.00 minimum.  NAUTICAL LOG has operated fast ferry boats on this run and from Miami, FL.  Suggestion, their Business Plan needs a complete review perhaps also their attitude towards potential passengers and/or passengers whom are now known as guests (mi casa es su casa) in the Cruise Industry.

The MS Pinar del Rio (ES) is only 225 long, a tiny boat by modern cruise and ferry vessel standards and she has two Classes.  This means that all the nicer parts of the vessel are closed off to the Economy Class passengers.  Their first mistake; this is neither Europe or Uruguay and United States passengers expect to pay for a cruise or trip were the whole vessel is available for their use.  Their second mistake; the fare structure needs simplification to just two rates, one way and round trip, with the same fare for weekdays and weekends plus the addition for Port fees.  They should state it clearly, no confusion no clever games or they are going to join the several unsuccessful small vessel operations that have tried this route before.

So Balearia if you read this, and we suspect you will, you may wish to make note of it because there will be no more free advice from NAUTICAL LOG.  At the rate you are going you will be out of business by the end of this year of 2011 - provided you get started at all.  Sorry but there it is, the writing is on the bulkhead!!

Good Watch

Please remember the 400 of our fellow seafarers whom are held captive by pirates off the coast of Somalia.


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