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Bahamas now an ideal tourism destination with 4.4 mln cruise tourists footfall

by Staff

Tuesday, January 9, 2024

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Nassau Cruise Port in the Bahamas is celebrating a triumphant year in cruise tourism as it shatters its annual passenger record, welcoming an impressive 4.4 million cruise passengers in 2023.

This cruise travel milestone reflects a remarkable 14% increase compared to the previous record set in 2019, showcasing the port’s substantial growth and the success of ongoing investments in port infrastructure.

The CEO of Nassau Cruise Port, Mike Maura, Jr., expressed gratitude for the collaborative effort that contributed to this achievement. Maura emphasized that the success of the port is a collective endeavor involving the cruise industry, travel agents promoting the Bahamas, government partners, local businesses, the community in New Providence, and the dedicated team at Nassau Cruise Port.

“Each of you makes a difference every day, owning your share of this success,” Maura stated, acknowledging the pivotal role played by various stakeholders in achieving this historic passenger record.

The record-breaking year is attributed not only to the popularity of Nassau as a convenient and sought-after cruise port but also to the strategic enhancements made in port facilities. The opening of new cruise terminal facilities and the introduction of a sixth berth in May 2023 demonstrated Nassau Cruise Port’s commitment to continual growth and revitalization.

Success of the Nassau Cruise Port

The success of the Nassau Cruise Port extended beyond annual records, with significant achievements throughout the year. In March, Nassau Cruise Port set an all-time, one-day high for cruise passenger visits, hosting 28,554 guests in a single day. This record was surpassed later in the year, with 29,316 cruise visitors on December 27.

Bahamas- Cruise Tourism Destination

Beyond the cruise port’s accomplishments, the Bahamas, as a whole, experienced exceptional cruise tourism growth in 2023. While final numbers for various types of arrivals are pending confirmation, it is anticipated that over nine million visitors arrived in the island nation during the year. This figure exceeds initial projections by more than one million visitors, demonstrating the Bahamas’ allure as a world-class destination.

The economic impact of this cruise tourism growth is substantial, contributing over $6 billion in visitor spending to the nation. The confidence in the Bahamas as a premier cruise tourism destination is evident in the remarkable influx of visitors, showcasing the positive impact on the local economy.

Nassau Cruise Port’s New Record in Cruise Tourism

Looking ahead to 2024, Nassau Cruise Port has set an ambitious goal of welcoming 5.6 million passengers to boost cruise tourism. With the anticipation of new, larger ships, including the Utopia of the Seas, the last of the Oasis-class vessels, scheduling calls to Nassau, this goal seems within reach. The port hosted a total of 1,210 ship calls in 2023, accommodating various cruise lines, such as Carnival Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean International, Norwegian Cruise Line, Disney Cruise Line, MSC Cruises, Regent Seven Seas Cruises, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Celebrity Cruises, and more.

Strategic Location Ideal for Cruise Tourism

Nassau’s strategic location, just 180 miles from PortMiami, 185 miles from Port Everglades, and 305 miles from Port Canaveral, positions it as a top destination for cruisers. The port’s accessibility from the three busiest cruise ports in Florida adds to its appeal, making it a preferred stop for major cruise lines and contributing to the overall success of the region as a cruising hub.

Future Plans for Cruise Tourism

In addition to celebrating its achievements, Nassau Cruise Port is already planning for the future. Downtown revitalization projects are set to enhance the local experiences for visitors in 2024. The newly revitalized Nassau waterfront promises unique finds, fantastic entertainment, and delightful culinary experiences, with further developments anticipated in the coming year.

The record-breaking success of Nassau Cruise Port in 2023 not only solidifies its status as a premier cruise destination but also underscores the Bahamas’ position as a thriving and vibrant hub in the global tourism landscape.

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