Ports North has dreged the Trinity Inlet channel to cater for larger cruise ships (Image: Ports North)
Carnival Australia has renewed its commitment to help Cairns grow as a cruise hub by booking multiple calls at the Australian city’s cruise terminal, which is managed by Ports North.
Between May 2018 and the end of 2019, Cairns will host 90 ship calls, the majority of which will be made by ships in Carnival Australia’s Princess Cruises, Holland America Line and Seabourn brands. Two ships from its P&O Cruises Australia brand – Pacific Dawn and Pacific Jewel – will make a total of seven two-day alongside calls to Cairns in 2019, anchoring off Yorkeys Knob.
In future, Ports North hopes to secure calls from the brands’ larger cruise ships, thanks to the completion of the Cairns Shipping Development Project. This involved Ports North dredging the Trinity Inlet channel to improve access for large cruise vessels of up to 300 metres in length to make alongside calls. This type of call is preferred by cruise operators because it eliminates the need for tender operations that can be affected by weather and sea conditions.
“The seven overnight calls in which our ships will spend two days at Cairns are a sign of the flexibility that the dredging will offer by facilitating alongside calls,” said Sture Myrmell, president of Carnival Australia and P&O Cruises Australia. “Cruise operators will view the post dredging environment in a positive light with the opportunities it will provide for alongside calls including those by larger ships that would otherwise sail past.”
Ports North has already received positive feedback about its ability to handle efficient turnarounds in Cairns, said Russell Beer, Ports North chairman. “The channel expansion project will open up a range of opportunities to target the more efficient Vista and Grand class vessels for both transits and turnaround options in Cairns. P&O has been a strong supporter of the Cairns destination and we welcome the opportunity to continue working with the company to grow cruise shipping in the region.”
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