UK ports welcomed 1.4 million transit passengers, generating around £100 million ($125 million) for coastal economies
The UK’s cruise industry experienced a rebound in cruise calls and passenger numbers in 2022, according to data released by national trade association Cruise Britain.
The 2022 season saw 2,176 cruise calls, 78 per cent of the record high in 2019. UK ports welcomed 1.4 million transit passengers, generating around £100 million ($125 million) for coastal economies, with each passenger contributing an average of £70 ($87.20). A total of 1.04 million passengers also embarked on cruises from the country, rebounding to 94 per cent of 2019 figures.
Cruise passengers visited or embarked at 58 different ports in the UK onboard 107 ships operated by 52 different cruise lines, with most ships calling on multiple occasions.
“2022 was the first full year of cruise activity since the pandemic and really built upon the unprecedented success of the 2021 domestic season,” said Ian McQuade, chair of Cruise Britain. “What we are seeing now are the rewards for an industry that has consistently worked together to recover, regenerate and develop. Whilst round Britain and Ireland cruise popularity continues to grow, we have now seen the successful return of itineraries where British port calls are part of a multi-country story of discovery’.
Cruise Britain is projecting an eight per cent growth in port calls across the UK, with regions such as the South West, North West and Scotland reporting that figures are likely to exceed this rate.
“The UK offers an incredibly diverse cruise holiday experience for guests, and this is one of the most powerful reasons for the growth projections that we are seeing,” said McQuade. “Cruise Britain and its members continue to collaborate with cruise lines, industry partners, stakeholders, and the government to support the development of cruise as a resilient and profitable sector of the travel industry.”