Press conference – Nature Fee 2019
Press Releases Nature Fee 2019
Kralendijk, 28 February 2019 – After an overlap period for a smooth transition, the 2019 individual nature fees and entry prices for Bonaire’s national parks are now effective as from the first of March.
For users of Bonaire National Marine Park (BNMP) the round dive tag fee is $ 45 and the square nature fee $ 25 per calendar year.
In Washington Slagbaai National Park (WSNP) a new fee of $ 3 is due for entry to the Visitor Center. For further use of the park, prices range from free entry to $ 15 or $ 40 per day, or $ 20 or $ 45 per calendar year. Prior purchase of the round dive tag or square nature tag entitles to discount. WSNP has different fees for visitors from Aruba, Curaçao, Sint-Maarten, St. Eustatius and Saba. For Bonairian residents separate fees apply for both BNMP and WSNP.
STINAPA communicates the new tariffs to all hospitality providers, dive schools and other activity centers on Bonaire. They are also listed at the STINAPA head office and the entrance of WSNP, as well as on the website https://stinapabonaire.org/stinapa/nature-tags/
The entrance fees for the two national parks are the main funding for sustainable management and protection of Bonaire’s nature treasures, on land and in the sea. Therefore, the purchase of the round dive tag (SCUBA diving) and square nature tag (all other water activities) is required by law: Island Resolution Marine Park 2010 paragraph II article 2.
The high nature values of our island are not only our natural, but also our economic capital. Visitors from all over the world come to Bonaire for its unique and varied nature.
STINAPA works for the best possible nature experience. With the raise in tariffs, STINAPA will be enabled to considerably extend its key services.
Kralendijk, 27 of February 2019 – Dear Reader,
For the information of your visitors and guests, STINAPA provides you with the nature fees that are effective as from March 1, 2019.
On the next page you find the fee schedules for entry to the Bonaire National Marine Park (BNMP) and Washington Slagbaai National Park (WSNP), each preceded by a brief explanation. The page can be printed to be put on the front desk, hung somewhere in view or entered in information folders in rooms and apartments.
The information below is for non-resident visitors only. WSNP has different fees for visitors from Aruba, Curaçao, Sint-Maarten, St. Eustatius, Saba. For Bonairian residents separate fees apply for both BNMP and WSNP. This more detailed information is specified on the annexed poster.
The entrance fees for our national parks are the main funding for sustainable management and protection of Bonaire’s nature treasures, on land and in the sea. Therefore, the purchase of the round dive tag (SCUBA diving) or square nature tag (all other water activities) is required by law: Island Resolution Marine Park 2010 paragraph II article 2.
The high nature values of our island are not only our natural, but also our economic capital. Tourists from all over the world visit Bonaire for its unique and varied nature, on land and in the sea. STINAPA works for the best possible nature experience, in a joint effort with hospitality providers, activity centers, visitors and guests. We call on you to spread the information, explain why the nature fees are mandatory and encourage people to contribute.
If you need more information or have any questions, do not hesitate to contact us.
Best regards, STINAPA Bonaire
BONAIRE NATIONAL MARINE PARK
The sea around Bonaire and Klein Bonaire – the Bonaire National Marine Park (BNMP) – is protected and managed by STINAPA. Users are required to pay an entrance fee, known as the nature tag. Your fees are the main funding for sustainable management of our national parks. They contribute to the preservation of our most vital resources, on land and in the ocean.
The round ‘dive’ tag is for SCUBA diving including a marine park orientation. The square ‘nature’ tag is for all other watersports activities, like swimming, kite- and windsurfing, kayaking and so on, including fishing and yachting. The paper receipt of your tag and your ID is required to gain discounted entry to Washington Slagbaai National Park (WSNP).
You can purchase your nature tag at dive shops, activity centers, and STINAPA headquarters. At the request of rangers and employees of STINAPA you must be able to show proof of payment.
|Activity||Fee||Proof of payment|
|Scuba diving, calendar year||$45||Round dive tag|
Other water activities, calendar year
Square nature tag
Note: – Children under 12, passengers of cruise ships and crews of commercial vessels do not pay for other water activities. However, if SCUBA-diving, they pay the fee stated above.
WASHINGTON SLAGBAAI NATIONAL PARK
Washington Slagbaai National Park (WSNP) is a nature sanctuary located in the northwestern past of the island. Users must pay the nature tag fee to enter. Those who only want to visit the Visitor Center at the entrance of the park, pay a separate entrance fee. Your fees are the main funding for sustainable management of our national parks. They contribute to the preservation of our most vital resources,
on land and in the ocean.
In the park are many activities, including car touring, hiking, mountain biking, SCUBA diving, snorkeling, swimming, bird watching and nature study. The park offers guided activities and tours at additional costs. The paper receipt of your nature tag and your ID is required to gain discounted entry to the park.
You can purchase your nature tag at dive shops, activity centers, the entrance of WSNP and STINAPA head- quarters. At the request of rangers and employees of STINAPA you must be able to show proof of payment.
|Activity||Fee||Proof of payment|
Visitor Center only
VC and park entry, round dive tag paid
paper receipt round dive tag plus ID
VC and park entry, single day, square nature tag paid
paper receipt square nature tag plus ID
VC and park entry, single day, no nature tag paid
paper receipt plus ID
VC and park entry, calendar year, square nature tag paid
paper receipt square nature tag plus ID
VC and park entry, calendar year, no nature tag paid
|$45||paper receipt plus ID|
Note: – For children under 12, entry to the Visitor Center and the park is free.
– ID: this has to be a photo ID like your C-card, passport, drivers licence, etc.
Kralendijk, 6 December 2018 – As of January 1, 2019 the new fees will take effect. The changes will affect the individual nature fee. the nature fee for non-divers has been fixed at USD 25.- per calendar year; and the nature fee for divers has been fixed at USD 45.- per calendar year. In order to facilitate a smooth transition to the new fees, the annual overlap period, observed by STINAPA in previous years, will be extended. This means that, in accordance with standard practice, a tag may be purchased at 2018 rates up to March 1st at the latest.
To counter the rising costs of managing and maintaining the National Parks of Bonaire and to enable improvement of key services, at the request of STINAPA, the Executive Council of the Public Entity of Bonaire has decided to amend the tariffs for the nature fee, which is the individual admission fee for access to the Bonaire National Marine Park that individual visitors to our island pay.
The nature fee has not been raised since 2005, while meanwhile, the costs for maintenance of the parks have risen considerably over the last 13 years. The number of residents of Bonaire has gone up from 12,000 to 19,000 in 2018; cruise tourism has risen sharply, with an expected total of upwards of 450,000 cruise passengers visiting Bonaire this year.
The decisions of the Public Entity to raise our tariffs is based on willingness-to-pay research that indicates that tourists highly appreciate Bonaire’s pristine nature and are generally willing to contribute even more than now requested. Also, in comparison to other MPA’s of similar quality throughout our region, the new tariffs are competitive.
With the raise in tariffs, STINAPA will be enabled to considerably extend its key services, as rightfully called for by our community for a number of years.
Specifially, it enables STINAPA to focus much more attention on areas like Klein Bonaire, Lac/Sorobon and other Ramsar sites that have been suffering from the increased user pressure. It enables us to extend our patrols and surveillance efforts in the evenings and weekends. Much needed research to support and inform park management decisions can be extended. STINAPA can enlarge the number of education hours in schools, outdoor nature awareness activities and intensify other outreach efforts. The recreational facilities to support sustainable enjoyment of both the marine and terrestrial parks can be drastically improved.
The way the maintenance and management of the Bonaire National Marine Park and the Washington Slagbaai National Park is unique, and guarantees independent governance.. Through the mechanism Bonaire has had in place for years now, it is the individual tourist that contributes to the upkeep of the parks, by paying admission. Neither the citizens of Bonaire (unless they scuba dive) nor the local government, nor the national government contribute structurally to the considerable costs of managing the parks.
At USD 45.- per calendar year the new costs of the scuba dive tag are less than 10% of the overall costs of many Open Water Courses offered on our island. STINAPA does not believe this to be a disproportionate percentage. The current tourist tax rate stands at USD 5.45 per person per night, which means that a 10-day stay on the island costs USD 54.50. Again, STINAPA does not believe that a scuba dive access pass of USD 45.- for a full calendar year, providing admission to one of the best maintained marine parks in our region, is out of balance in comparison to some of these costs.
Our funding mechanism avoids, as much as possible, that the Bonairian tax payer carries the costs of the upkeep of our parks. Instead, the individual tourist, and businesses that make commercial use of Bonaire’s precious natural resources, ensure funding of the maintenance of the parks. We believe this system is fair, and worth defending.
During multiple stakeholder meetings that STINAPA has conducted over the past year with all categories of operators in the marine park, we have consistently indicated and delivered the arguments why, after 13 years, the fees need some adjustment. STINAPA has also indicated that a raised fee is not the final goal, as far as we are concerned. Ultimately, we agree with most operators that we need a modern mechanism where fees are collected “at the gate” as tourists enter our island, and that cruise tourists should not be exempt.
We call upon all operators to jointly with us advocate for modernizations.
Of course, implementation of the new fee structure requires some level of coordination with key operators in the marine park, chiefly amongst them the dive operators, represented by CURO.
We thank you for your continued support.