We miss you – Bill’s Update #5
As many of you know, deep sea fishing is, after diving, my favorite hobby and last Saturday together with my son-in-law Francis, our former maintenance manager Teolu and William, one of our boat captains, we tried our luck. Where basically every dive you do on Yap guarantees you to see beautiful marine life, fishing is still called fishing instead of catching, as the outcome is always uncertain. One small Wahoo was a disappointing catch, but not being busy with reeling in the big boys, I had time to think about what to share with you.
I am beginning to see positive signs of the world trying to return to normal or at least as normal as it is going to get for a while. I told you in my previous blog that the National Government has stepped up to the plate to support affected businesses such as us and they will be aiding our staff in the form of unemployment benefits. The staff have completed the 4-page applications, but the actual payments have not begun as I write this. Reading and watching the news that other islands, countries and dive destinations are opening up again is also a positive sign. I wish the business owners of the world all the best as things get back to normal, but I cannot deny that sometimes I am thinking, “why not us?”
The answer to that question is simple, but also complicated to understand. As you all know we are one of the few places in the world that have remained Coronavirus free and the decision makers are very proud of that. They should be, although it came with a huge cost to the economy, especially the tourism sector. I am afraid the Coronavirus is, and will remain, a part of our lives and even when a vaccine is developed it will not disappear. It’s great that we managed to stay free of this awful virus, but it’s time to develop not only a vaccine, but also an exit strategy. Most of my time is spent working with the State and National leadership to develop that exit strategy. The complicated part of the answer “why not us?” lies in the same reason why Yap is so special and unique; remote, pure, and traditional. People on island are hesitant to open and are carefully watching as re-opening efforts around the world begin to take place. I will keep advocating that an exit strategy be developed as it is not only good for our business and employees, but most of all, it is because we miss you.
We Miss You!
The Coronavirus pandemic and resulting travel bans have changed dive travel as we know it and we at the Manta Ray Bay Resort & Yap Divers are using this time to plan for changes which will improve the customer experience. A revised dive plan is number one on the list and is the major change you will immediately notice.
Our normal dive day will now include wake-up coffee/tea in your room, breakfast, 3 dives including lunch, ordered from a menu, served on the dive boats between the 2nd and 3rd dives. NITROX is also included for all Enriched Air certified divers.
After a 3-tank dive day enjoy our home brew and dinner on the Mnuw
This change is a result of the overwhelming demand and success of our SuperSize packages from the past. You will have the option to opt out of 3 tanks per day but due to distance, cost of flights and the multitude of exciting dive sites in Yap, we wish to make it easier for you and your dive buddies to get the most for your vacation dollar. For our revised rates please visit https://www.mantaray.com/rates/. Also, please note that we are taking reservations for the future and these reservations will be easy to change, if travel bans require.
Belated Happy Father’s Day to all the fathers out there. My family got together for the day and it is one of those times when I realize how blessed I am as a husband, father and grandfather. Hope you enjoyed your day as much as my family and I did.
Hope you all had a wonderful Father’s Day
All the best. Please stay safe & healthy!
Bill, family, and staff