New Regulations: Tour Boat Operators Unhappy

June 9, 2011

This afternoon [June 9] tour boat operators said their business was being negatively impacted by new regulations, which bar them from being at port on the Corporation of Hamilton’s property for over 15 minutes, and also apparently from soliciting business in the area. Tour boat operators said that one person has already been given a $100 ticket.

tour boat sign bermuda

Michael Gladwyn, operator of the tour boat Reef Explorer, said that a practice that he had been following for 35 years was suddenly changed, without warning, yesterday. It was yesterday that he was given a warning, by Police, that he must not spend more than fifteen minutes at wharfside.

Nigel Prescott, another Tour Boat operator says also that this is a highly unusual move. At 1:30pm today, he said that he’d spoken personally to City Mayor Charles Gosling in an effort to get a better resolution, but that he had no definitive answer from the Mayor.

Speaking late this afternoon Mayor Charles Gosling told Bernews that he would be meeting with Michael Gladwyn, President of the Tour Boat Operators Association, tomorrow morning. He said that the meeting had been arranged after telephone calls that had taken place between noon and about 1:15pm today.

He confirmed that tomorrow’s meeting is likely to deal with matters relating to the time that Tour Boats can spend alongside City of Hamilton docks and wharves.

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Comments (45)

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  1. Disgusted !!! says:

    but the simple fact that the police officer would still issue the ticket under the circumstance just goes to show how ignorant these foreign cops are …. i’ld bet $100 that this wasnt a Bermudian police officer that issued this ticket !!! these foriegn cops have no respect for Bermudians its disgusting they way they handle individuals sometime

    • Yng Black Mind says:


      Are you serious? You are going to harp on the status of the Police officer – really? The most important aspect of the story for me is this –

      There appears there was NO PRIOR DISCUSSION OR CONSULTATION with the key stakeholders, i.e. the Tour Boat Operations Association. The Mayor has scheduled a meeting for tomorrow – indicating that they changed the regulations without speaking to them first.

      This is a way for the Corporation of Hamilton to recoup funds and make money – - nothing more. Dang shameful, if you ask me.

      Yng Black Mind
      (those who know understand)

      • MT Pockets says:

        yng Black Mind,
        I may be wrong but I do believe any money comming from tickets goes to Government – not the Corp of Hamilton.
        However I do agree with you, it is totally out of order – just one less thing for the tourist to do in our boring Island.
        Mayor Gosling needs to GO.

        • PEPPER says:

          Mt Pockets I agree with you ..Gosling needs to go and the sooner the better

      • Disgusted !!! says:

        im half white you racist prick

        • Yng Black Mind says:


          Brother – you have be confused?! Where did that “white/black” statement come from?

          My name has nothing to do with you or your race, color, creed, etc. – - It is my chosen name for this forum.

          The point I made in my reply is that the status of the police officer was not important (Bermudian or non-Bermudian) – - when I get a ticket, it’s a ticket – plain and simple.

          Relax brother – - life is beautiful.

          Yng Black Mind
          (those who know understand)

        • mixitup says:

          Grow up! What is wrong with you. Oh yes immaturity!

        • James says:

          Wow, you need to read before you spout off mate! Why bring race and the nationality of the cops into the mix for?! You totally missed the point, read the article again and come back with a clear mind my friend.

  2. Preto Plato says:

    Government should have taken them over when they had the chance!

    • 32n64w says:

      So by your thinking should Government be entitled to take over every organisation in Bermuda if they so choose?

      • PAS says:

        only the successful ones :)

        • Beezlebub says:

          The success of the CoH has nothing to do with the people who work there. Right place at the right time.

    • sandgrownan says:

      Why – so they could rape the finances and destroy that like they have everything else they’ve touched. Clueless.

  3. WHY NOT says:

    15 minutes Bermuda time = 1 Hour

  4. itwasn'tme says:

    Forget the ‘foreign cop’ stupidness…..he’s just doing his job albiet with a robotic mindset (I know BDA cops with the same mentality). You have to ask, why the Corporation all of a sudden put this restriction in place knowing that the tour boats rely on their boats physical presence along the heavy tourist traffic area. I smell a barrel full of rotten fish heads!

  5. Question says:


  6. Bedhead says:

    The tour boats pay a fee to the Corporation to use the docks. The fee is based on licensed capacity, length, beam and schedule. It can add up to a fair bit.
    Tour boats already struggle it is a 6 month a year buisiness. Shame on the Corporation!

  7. Terry says:

    No clue as to what is going on, along with a lot of others.

    Damn tour operators….taking up berths for Crooze Sheeps, getting in the way of M&P tugs, (lunch break)…..shame on these people.

    Get the hell out of the way. Your stopping the lemmings running off Birnaybee Heal cummitin zooziside…….

    Sinks the b%$ards and turn their lead zincs into plow shares…(time shares exempt)…..

  8. PAS says:

    Minister Promotes Bermuda At New York Events while back home we make it harder and harder every day to serve our tourists.

  9. PORTO GIRL says:

    Chasing more Bermudian’s away from a honest days work. You will see all these tour boats up for sale soon. We did the tourist wrong up at Dockyard with buses, now they are doing it in town. Watch and see how many tourist continue coming to this Island!!!!

  10. Hmmmmm says:

    In July 2010 when ya’ll were marching down Church Street to the House, flying the flag upside down and running your nasty-azz ads this is precisely the kind of outdated, insensitve and downright stupidity you were trying to save. Congratulations. One day my Government will realize that when something’s dying,they need to just kill it.As for the idiot who started this rant about foreign cops, you can’t have it both ways; either you want all the laws enforced or you don’t. The ones you don’t want enforced, send the list to DeSilva so he can send his guys somewhere they’re wanted. Idiot.




    • Bermudian in Mexico says:

      I’m a Bermudian in Mexcio on an extended vacation right now and I’m considering never coming back to Bermuda. My buddy works on a tour boat and this move to limit the yachts 15 minutes to be at port is a straight up FAIL.

    • check it says:

      @disappointed american. honestly at some points i do agree with you. Bermuda is losing a huge chunk of it’s culture (partially from mis-guided gov’t officials and some tourists who come seeking the comforts of home). i’m bermudian and i’ve travelled all over the world (literally) but Bermuda, like any place else, is going to be as fun or as boring as you make it. No matter where I go, home or abroad, i make the most of my time there. what i see is that you and your husband are the boring ones. you lack imagination. anyone can go to a place and expect to be catered to with everything from fun to food but if you lack the drive and sense of adventure it’s going to be boring to you.

  12. PISSED OFF says:

    Are you serious!?!? Where are you suppose to pick up people from? The Corp of Hamilton doesn’t even use the docks like that. They are being unreasonable and they should be ashamed of themselves. It makes me dislike this island more and more each passing day – 22 year old Bermudian Male.

    • Terry says:

      So yah pissed off. Deddy owns a boat? Thats the problem. Yoo black or white. Oh thats rite….don’t matter as long as your “22″………

  13. Tired and frustrated... says:

    This new “regulation” makes no sense. I have worked on tour boats in the summer and I will be the first to tell you it takes more than 15 minutes for a tour boat to load and unload passengers, their property, etc. Its just ridiculous that they think this is acceptable to enforce. If a boat is not visable to tourists or locals for the designated time they have booked it for, they start to panic and then get irritated with the operator when he/she shows up late and then the operator has to rush to get everyone on board in a small amount of time. The way tourists have been treated this year is appauling and yes we all get annoyed with them and wish they were not here sometimes but they support this economy even if its in a small way and we need them so we need to start treating them well so they come back. If you read the Gazette on any given day there are Letters to the Editor complaining about the cut backs for the ferry, rude bus drivers, etc. Pretty soon cruise ships will stop coming here because it will be too much of a hassle for them to come. Seriously, this country needs to smarten up because its going downhill very fast and there is no relief in sight. Its quite sad really.

  14. True Bermudian says:

    Now we can just have Sonny and Jinx walking around to greet the tourists.

    They are the only real Ambassadors to Bermuda on Front Street left.

    And no one ever bothers them or tells them to move along.

    Why JUST today I saw Jinxy at L’Oriental express getting a coffee, sitting outside and harassing some pour soul (who just wanted their muffin and coffee in peace) for spare change.

    The new Bermuda. Take it or leave it.

    • Had Enuff 2 says:

      Now Now Ease up on SONNY.. HE NEVER WILLL BUGG YOU FOR MONEY !!!! I GET HELL to even GIVE HIM A DOLLAR.. Always says no but thank you. I have to force to give him sum change

  15. rubber bong says:

    Just so that you know, this 15min limit doesn’t just apply to the Corp of Hamilton docks. It applies to all public docks. I was at a town hall a few weeks ago where the police gave a short talk about this very issue. It may be that the offense is more pronounced in Hamilton. Remember there isn’t a lot of dock space in town for the general public and tour operators to use so its unfair to others (be they private or commercial) that may want to use the dock also but cant because someone has been there for hours or even over night. The public docks must be accessible to emergency services at all times from land and by sea.

    • rubber bong says:

      oh yeah, the police said these signs will be going up at ALL public docks but they of course cost money and there are +150 public docks, slips and landings. So you will see more as they become available.

  16. K D says:

    I hope this will be cleared soon. The tour boats offer one of the few activities for tourists. I went on the Reef Explorer several times and was impressed with what I saw and what I learned about Bermuda, its history and our waters. Great job! Giving that the tour boat operators are licensed and pay a fee to the Corporation of Hamilton for using the docks I always thought those signs (above) about the 15 minutes were for other (private) boaters who dock. I thougth the idea was to keep the docks clear for those who pay for them and depend on them for their living. It is hard to run a seasonal business, and we are lucky that our tour boat operators are working hard and they address the tourists in a very quiet and friendly way.

  17. James says:

    The Corporation should be ashamed of itself and repeal this law/policy immediately!! Here we all are trying to reinvent tourism and get back to some sort of good numbers for Bermuda and they are quite literally “raping” those who are providing the service to our visitors. What in the hell is that all about?!

    Mayor Gosling, I now understand why so many people wanted you AND the Corporation GONE!!! You serve no purpose and are actually a hinderance now, in the past, and most likely in the future as well. Just be gone so we can attempt to try and solve Bermuda’s tourism.

  18. Andy P says:

    Get ‘em Uncle Mike ! What the corporation fails to also realize is the service that these tour boats are offering to our tourists, cruise ship passengers as well as air passengers. Not only do the visitors experience one of the best summer activites we have to offer, probably the best but i have a bias opinion, they also learn a rich history of the island, and in some cases offered a ride back to Hamilton if the tour embarks and returns from Dockyard, as most of the boats come back to town. I am certain that an agreement can be reached to solve this issue as it is really an unnecessary one to be having at this juncture in Bermuda’s economy!

  19. Hmmm says:

    Ever watch the tourist getting on and off those boats? They need longer than 15 minutes to unload the boat…

  20. Well Um Um Like You know says:

    Friggin tourists should be made to send their $$$$$ hur and never actually land in Bda. We are so spashull that they owe us that. Vee as Bermoojans are Spashull you no. UMUM dey should close de urport an force dem peoples too send us dollas. An axapts should be turld to go too! Amma Bermoojun you no!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Am Spashul!!!!

    • James says:

      Sounds like you have an issue or two mate, maybe you should lie on someone’s couch and try and fix that before it eats you up inside.

  21. Bermudian in Mexico says:

    This sounds like another setup for failure.


  23. bda for life says:

    The coh is wrong for this stupid policy how the hell can you limit tour boat operators 15 minutes to park and board passengers. Gosling needs to change this or go!!!!! This is the same person who made the airport remove two airline check-in counters because departing passengers because he felt that they couldn’t see his liquor store!!!!are you serious,gosling you are one stupid decision maker all you think of is yourself gimmie a break

  24. Well Um Um Like You know says:

    Bermuda seems to be hell bent on driving away every last tourist. I don’t ever recall COH making such a stupid rule. My comment above was meant to be comedy only. That’s because comedy is the only word I can think to describe such an idiotic regulation. What’s next? Taxis not allowed to stay parked at the airport for more than 5 seconds? How about tourists not allowed to get off the plane?

  25. check it out says:

    this new regulation is completely stupid. are they trying to get rid of the tourist industry altogether?! let’s really think about this for a minute.

  26. roger says:

    The Corporation made their rulings then after PROTEST want to meet with the tour Operators. Why didn’t they have discussions with the MAIN USERS THE TOUR OPERATORS before making a draconion ruling as they did! It’s Employers/Owners like them that makes Work Relations sour on this Island.

  27. Ouch says:

    Surely they have an easement on being able to dock since they’ve done it for all these years…