Saga Cruises’ Saga Sapphire will be the first cruise ship to berth at Quai Paquet on 1 October (Image: Saga Cruises)
The Port of Québec is to trial berthing cruise ships at Quai Paquet for the first time in 2017 after signing a new agreement with the City of Lévis.
Located within the port’s jurisdiction, Quai Paquet is managed by Québec Port Authority and is a short ferry ride away on the other side of the St. Lawrence River. As part of the new agreement, the Port of Québec will test using Quai Paquet as an additional berthing option for cruise vessels visiting the Canadian city. Saga Cruises’ Saga Sapphire will be the first cruise ship to berth at Quai Paquet on 1 October.
“We are very pleased to have concluded this agreement with the City of Lévis for the operation and use of the Quai Paquet,” said Mario Girard, president and CEO of the Port of Québec. “We are of the opinion that Quai Paquet is an excellent option for our customers during times of high traffic, while the latter has an exceptional positioning vis-à-vis Québec City.”
If successful, the pilot project could lead to the Port of Québec berthing cruise ships on a regular basis in future.
“The mooring of the ship in Lévis will be a crucial step for the future development of the wharf, while the highest standards put forward by the Port of Québec must be respected,” said Girard. “Ultimately, it will be the assessment of the ship and passengers that will determine the use of the wharf for international cruises in the future. We are deploying all of our personnel to ensure that passengers and crew will enjoy the same high-end service that is the hallmark of our cruise port.”
2017 is set to be the busiest year in the Port of Québec’s cruise history, with 34 ships from 25 cruise lines making a total of 131 calls. Passenger numbers are expected to rise by almost 30% from 2016 to hit a record 200,000 visitors.