Larger ships on the horizon point to further passenger growth in 2019 (Image: Port of Seattle)
The Port of Seattle in Washington, US welcomed over 1.1 million passengers at its cruise terminals in 2018, a record for the city.
This marks the second year in a row that numbers exceeded the one million mark after the port handled 1.07 million cruise passengers in 2017.
“This year, Port of Seattle is proud to celebrate our 20 years of serving the cruise industry, while also handling over one million passengers for the second year in a row,” said Courtney Gregoire, commission president at the port. “This continued growth points to a bright future for cruise in Seattle, and we are proud that each homeported cruise vessel brings approximately US$2.7 million for our local economy. Through innovation and collaboration, we continue to work with our partners to make this the greenest port in the nation.”
In 2019, the following cruise vessels will sail from Seattle to Alaska: Carnival Cruise Line’s Carnival Legend; Celebrity Cruises’ Celebrity Solstice; Holland America Line’s Eurodam and Oosterdam; Oceania Cruises’ Oceania Regatta; and Princess Cruises’ Ruby Princess and Star Princess.
Next year, the port will see the arrival of Royal Caribbean International’s 4,180-passenger Ovation of the Seas, which will be the largest vessel on the west coast of America. Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Joy, sister ship of Norwegian Bliss, which was christened in Seattle this May ahead of her inaugural Alaska season.
Seattle’s cruise business is responsible for over 4,000 jobs, US$501 million in annual business revenue, and US$18.9 million annually in state and local tax revenues. Each cruise vessel is estimated to bring in US$2.7 million for the local economy, helping to generate a total revenue of more than US$500 million each cruise season.