A Not So Warm Welcome to Grenada!

After long flight, and landing at Maurice Bishop International Airport, nobody expected to be greeted with the rude and hostile attitude of some ‘female’ immigration staff we encountered.

What a welcome, and how embarrassing on their part.

Perhaps these staff did not wish to encourage tourism into Grenada and preferred for us to return home to our native lands and spread the word that we are not wanted or welcome in Grenada. It was a truly shocking first impression.

Unfortunately, many passengers I spoke to from the same Virgin flight echoed the same sentiments.

It also seemed rather unprofessional of one officer to go around pouncing on people in the immigration queue, and putting them on the spot by loudly asking “are you a native?”. This shows a level of ignorance, as the people she picked on, all fit a certain image of what she thought a native looked like  – however in this day and age, people of all races and complexions can quite possibly hold a Grenadian passport, depending on their family ties and circumstances.

A simple “anyone holding a Grenadian passport, please step this way…” would have sufficed, rather than picking on people.

So not a particularly friendly or welcoming start to our Grenada visit.

Disappointingly this hostility didn’t stop here, I’ll come back to this topic in another blog.

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The sun begins to set on Grande Anse Beach

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Good night Grenada

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8 thoughts on “A Not So Warm Welcome to Grenada!

  1. Cherryl,
    As a Greniadian residing on the island; let me offer my apologies for your inexcusable bad treatment upon your arrival at MBIA. We here in Grenada greatly appreciates and wants every visitor to our beautiful shores to feel welcome, happy and tranquil. I am forwarding your post to the Port Authority at MBIA so that they may look into this matter. Maybe the two immigration officers are in need of more training or a different post. We hope that the rest of your stay in Grenada was an enjoyable and fun one. Please come back again, if only to see if your reception has changed. Also, please email me the flight number, arrival date, and if you took note of the immigration officer/s name or badge number, that will be most helpful.
    Thank you and have a wonderful weekend.
    Nick.
    Chantimelle, St. Patrick’s Grenada.

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    1. Thank you Nick, that’s very kind, I appreciate the supportive comments.
      I do intend to forward my own complaint with necessary details – but thanks for the offer all the same. I doubt any amount of training can instil basic good manners and pleasant demeanour (short of acting school) – as that comes from within, and those women were showing none of it. I know it is always a minority of people who let the team down, but I also encountered even worse service in a local eatery in St George – which I will soon blog about separately as I am even more outraged with what I experienced there, it was far more personal!
      Grenada holds a lot of beauty, which is a privilege to experience, hopefully others visiting the island won’t be so unfortunate in their encounters.
      Thanks for visiting the blog, and have a lovely weekend too.

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  2. I’m not sure why immigration officers in many places have to be rude, indifferent or just plain hostile. A little power is sometimes a dangerous thing. Best form of defence I have found is quiet indifference and maximum politeness no mater what. All that said, I have found Grenada to be one of the friendliest places on earth and so I guess that particular immigration officer was having a bad day. My worst experience was in Iran where the IO kept sending me to the back of the long long queue until the queue was no more, he then let me through. Ho hum. It takes all sorts!

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    1. Thanks for checking in – you are right about the dangers of a little authority/power. It is very sad, as a little power can allow you to make a more positive impact and be a ‘useful’ example to others – instead some allow it to consume them selfishly for their own ego. Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of rude people everywhere you go, but it’s all the more saddening when you think of how reliant small islands are on tourism, and a small few shoot themselves in the foot at the expense of the majority. In particular there were two officers sat together giving a duo act to many of the passengers from my flight, a smile would have been too much to ask. Your experience in Iran sounds outrageous, almost like a deliberate attempt to see how far they could push your buttons until you reacted – it cannot be easy but I agree with your ‘indifferent’ approach, it’s hard to keep annoying someone when they don’t give you a reaction – what’s the saying ‘Kill them with kindness’…. (well not literally lol)
      All sorts indeed!

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