For the upcoming cruise season, opening now and ending in April 2020, 21 different ships from 11 cruise liner companies will dock at the Cruise Terminal’s E berth.
One of the ships, the Aidamira, will return as many as 17 times, while the MSC Orchestra will return six times, the Azamara Quest four times, the Nautica three times and the MS Bremen and the Albatross will each make two visits. This culminates in 57 ship visits for the season.
Conservatively, the Cruise Terminal will welcome roughly 100 000 passengers and 30 000 crew members. During this period, customs officials at the Cruise Terminal processed 266 149 passengers. This number includes crew who effectively become tourists when they arrive in Cape Town.
The first time Cape Town had two ships docking on the same day (the Musica and Queen Elizabeth in January 18, 2019) there was enormous excitement. In the season ahead, Capetonians can look forward to more double arrivals, notably the Artania and MSC Orchestra on January 17, 2020 and three ships, the Norwegian Spirit, World Odyssey and Aidamira on March 23, 2020. Other ship visits to note include the Queen Elizabeth which is due to dock November 19, 2019 and the MSC Orchestra on January 12, 2020.
The V&A Waterfront’s Andre Blaine, Executive Manager Marine and Industrial, said, “”While in port, these visitors all use local transport and book tours, visit local restaurants and tourist attractions and shop for gifts, all of which positively impacts on the economy and job creation. Many passengers and crew also choose to extend their stay in the city, and they either fly home from here or fly to the next port to catch up with their ship.” But it does not end there.
While in harbour, many foreign crew disembark to return home and some are replaced by South African crew. The services required by these ships also create the ocean economy’s ripple effect. While here, they restock with local goods such as food, wines, flowers and more. Some ships also require maintenance creating further employment for ship builders, welders, electricians, and a host of other technical crew.
“Cape Town is fast becoming known as the ‘turn-around’ port for both inbound and outbound international arrivals and departures, and we aim to build on this success. Our objective is to become the number one port in Southern Africa for cruise liner business,” Blaine added.