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Portland charts economic boost to the region | Cruise Europe

Portland charts economic boost to the region

Friday, December 14, 2018 - 13:01 by ce-press

At the end of every cruise season Portland Port reviews its entire operation with the aim of continually improving the service it provides. As part of the ports improvement strategy, research has been undertaken over the last three years based on the activities that passengers undertake whilst in port and helps put to bed the myth that all passengers visiting Portland go to Stonehenge.

The data collected shows a clear pattern that, on average, 40% of passengers go on official excursions that are arranged by the ship, whilst 60% use the free shuttle service provided by the port, stay on the ship or make individual plans.

Further research analysis shows that 80% of passengers stay in Dorset itself. This, when combined with recent data released by the Cruise Lines International Association on the economic benefit of the cruise industry, makes for positive reading.

Cruise passengers spend an average of €80 per person during a port call, on excursions, on independent travel arrangements, on food and drink and in shops, making the input to the local economy significant. In addition, crew members spend on average, a further €35 per head.

When combined this means that in 2018 Portland Port’s cruise business generated around €3.4m, while the forecast for 2019 means a further €5.8m could be pumped into the local and regional economy. Overall, in 2017 alone, cruising contributed €10.4bn to the UK economy.

The 2018 season has been a positive one, beginning with a call from the most frequent visitor, Phoenix Reisen, and followed by the longest and heaviest ship to call, Norwegian Breakaway, as well as perhaps the smallest, 50-passenger Hebridean Princess. Other visitors included Seven Seas Explorer and Navigator, Disney Magic and newbuild Seabourn Ovation which called twice.

Next year a 38% increase in calls (44) compared to this is scheduled. Princess Cruises and Pullmantur will call for the first time. Larger ships and more calls means 62,000 passengers will visit in 2019, compared to around 36,000 this year.

Ian McQuade, general manager commercial Portland Port, commented: “It is exciting to see everyone’s hard work pay off with the ever-increasing number of cruiseships that are choosing to visit Portland Port and the local area.”

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