Sat, Oct 24, 2015 - Page 4 News List

Cruise ship arrivals up 8% this year

SUBSTANTIAL CARGO:One of the highlights at Keelung Port this year was the arrival of the ‘Quantum of the Seas,’ which brought 4,212 passengers to the nation last month

By Shelley Shan  /  Staff reporter

The number of international tourists arriving on cruise liners is estimated to reach almost 780,000 this year, registering 8 percent growth from last year, Taiwan International Ports Corp (TIPC) said yesterday.

Cruise line visitors to Keelung Port are estimated to top 588,000 this year, the highest among other large seaports in the nation.

Song I-ching (宋益進), director of the port’s stevedoring and warehousing business division, said that the port welcomed 434,480 cruise line passengers between January and last month, an increase of 12.55 percent compared with the same period last year.

He said that the cruise line visitors scheduled to arrive from this month to December are to top 153,600, based on the applications the port has received so far.

“In the past, we often said that the cruise line season begins in April and lasts until December, but this year we have cruise ships coming all the way from February to December. The difference is between the peak and off-peak seasons,” he said.

Keelung Port said one of the highlights this year was the arrival of the Quantum of the Seas, which is owned by Royal Caribbean International (RCI) and brought 4,212 passengers to Keelung last month. The ship is scheduled to arrive again on Dec. 23, bringing more than 4,000 passengers.

Star Cruises has also extended its shipping dates to December, the port said, adding that the company plans to offer cruise tours using the Golden Princess cruise ship in April next year.

TIPC statistics showed that the number of international tourists visiting the nation via cruise ships has grown from 326,538 in 2012 to an estimated 777,690 this year. The state-run port company said that the number is expected to grow further in the next three years as more international cruise liners have planned to deployed more cruise ships in Asia.

RCI’s Ovation of the Seas, for example, plans to offer tours from Tianjian in China in May next year. The ship is reported to have a maximum capacity of 4,905 passengers.

This story has been viewed 2535 times.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top