Editorial Staff
3 weeks ago

Editorial Staff
3 weeks ago

Cruise tourism continues to rebound with high volumes expected for the remainder of the season

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​By Aabigayle McIntosh

“The year 2024 could potentially emerge as Antigua and Barbuda’s most successful year for cruise tourism, as per current forecasts,” notes Colin C. James, Chief Executive Officer of the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority.

James anticipates an influx of over 895,000 passengers based on the current volume of bookings for the upcoming season.

The surge is attributed to the growth in homeporting activities, expected to experience a significant uptick.

James elaborates, stating, “A total of 415 calls have been booked for this year, marking an increase of 39 calls compared to the current year. Much of this can be attributed to the homeporting opportunities in St John’s. Carnival UK, P and O, Royal Clipper, Emerald Cruises, and Sea Dreams are among those choosing to homeport here, including smaller luxury cruises that contribute to boosting our overall numbers.”

With a robust airlift supporting the destination and upcoming developments like the fifth berth and the rehabilitation of St John’s City, James expresses optimism, saying, “It’s all coming together.” He emphasizes that the upsurge in numbers will translate into increased business for taxi drivers, vendors, and other stakeholders.

Meanwhile, Arvia returned to the island on Saturday for her sixth homeporting call of the season.

The vessel will make three more visits to the island before the season ends. Emerald Sakara was also in port for her seventh of the thirteenth turnaround calls schedules for the season, while SeaDream 11 homeported on Sunday.

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