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Cruise Gate Hamburg, the operating company for the city’s three terminals, today announced that it expects 160 calls for the 2016 season, or four more than this year, for an estimated 661,000 passengers, up sharply from 525,000 this year, due to bigger ships.
“The strong growth – up by 26 per cent – is attributable to the fact that in 2016 we will have more calls by higher-capacity ships than has been the case to date,” explained Sacha Rougier, managing director of Cruise Gate Hamburg. These will include the new AIDAprima, which will launch weekly sailing to European capitals from Hamburg on April 30, and the MSC Splendida, which has been based in Hamburg since May 2015.
The most frequent visitor in 2016 will be the AIDAprima – with 39 turnarounds. “Never before has a cruise vessel called at the Hanseatic City as frequently in a single year,” Rougier continued. AIDAsol (24 calls) and the MSC Splendida (16 calls) rank second and third, respectively, followed by Hapag-Lloyd Kreuzfahrten, Cunard, and Phoenix Reisen.
The cruise year begins Jan. 8 with a parallel call by Cunard (Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth) and ends Dec. 31. Of the 160 total calls next year, there will be 27 double calls, six triple calls and, as part of the Port Anniversary (“Hafengeburtstag”) there will be a quadruple (May 8) and even a quintuple call (May 7) if the Albatros berthing at Kirchenpauerkai is included. Apart from the new AIDAprima, Hamburg will also be welcoming the Ocean Dream, the Marina, and the Caribbean Princess for the first time.