You may have heard me often say that there is no tourism without transport, and it is in that context in which Bermuda has welcomed 310,587 cruise passengers to our shores this season, with an approximate economic impact of $131.5M. This is an increase of $28.2M in economic activity since the original projections at the beginning of the year.
As of 5 October, there are 39 more calls in the fourth quarter period estimated to bring a further 63,778 passengers to Bermuda by the end of the year. To date, we have received 127 cruise calls.
The Ministry anticipates that by the end of the season, approximately 166 cruise calls, with around 374,365 passengers visiting our shores, representing 92,524 more passengers or an additional $24.9 million of economic impact than initially forecasted totalling an estimated economic impact of $156.1 million.This is $53.1 above the original projections.
This positive news is attributed to the cruise ships arriving from June through to October with an average occupancy of 76%. Further, the new survey data collected by the Bermuda Tourism Authority on cruise ship passenger spending shows an increase from $225 per person to $262 per person.
The Ministry of Transport will publish the first draft of the 2023 Cruise Ship Schedule shortly. Of particular note, 2023 is shaping to be a record year with 222 cruise ship calls on the books, which is a testament to Bermuda’s relationships with our cruise line partners led by the Section Head of Transport Planning, Stacey Evans. Now that Bermuda has opened up with COVID-19 testing ending as of 25 October, Bermuda is even more attractive, and the forecasted 2023 cruise ship numbers speak for themselves. Of the 15 cancellations, eight were due to COVID-19 testing, six due to weather, and one due to the sale of the Viking Sun.
However, January 2023 has eight calls, February has three calls, and March has 13 calls scheduled. Bermuda has done a stellar job this year; thanks to all our stakeholders for a job well done. The future looks bright as starting with this season, we, Bermuda, can now boast about being a year-round cruise destination.
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