Nassau – More than 157 000 passengers have visited The Bahamas since the start of the year with a record 26 410 passengers arriving during one day last week, and stakeholders indicating that the figures are a “strong rebound in the cruise industry”.
The Nassau Cruise Port (NCP) in a statement, said that the previous one-day total was 25 393 and that the port had received 1 592 cruise ship calls since the restart of cruising in 2021, with several of those being six-ship days.
NCP chief executive officer, Mike Maura Jr said that the high number of cruise passengers this early in the year was a great sign for Bahamians given the country’s dependency on the tourism sector.
“This is indicative of a strong rebound in the cruise industry, with climbing occupancy rates. These passenger volumes have a positive impact on the tourism industry in The Bahamas. Geographically, The Bahamas is blessed, not only with sun, sand and sea; but also with proximity to the major home ports in the US, and Nassau is the busiest transit port in the world.
“Nassau often caters to repeat cruise travel clientele, and this year will showcase more exciting offerings downtown with the completion of the cruise port. This is an exciting time, and a very exciting and encouraging start to 2023,” said Maura.
NCP said that the country welcomed more than 3.2 million cruise passengers last year and is hoping to increase that number to more than four million before the end of 2023.
The NCP said it had hoped to mark the opening of the new cruise port on May 6, but this coincides with the coronation day for King Charles III, and Prime Minister Phillip Davis will not be here.
“The Nassau Cruise Port project includes a 3500-person capacity amphitheater, a Junkanoo museum, authentic Bahamian retail and food and beverage spaces, and new and exciting entertainment and event spaces.
“The addition of the sixth berth allows Nassau Cruise Port to hold the largest ships in the world and allows tens of thousands of passengers to experience The Bahamas each and every day.” (CMC)