The Port of New Orleans has reported a new record with 1,150,172 passenger movements at its Erato Street and Julia Street Cruise Terminals in 2017, marking the fourth consecutive year of more than one million cruise passenger movements and reinforcing its importance as a key driver of the hospitality industry’s economic impact in the region.
“These year-end results validate the continued appeal of cruising from the Crescent City and reflect our commitment to excellence,” said Brandy D. Christian, Port of New Orleans president and CEO. “We expect additional growth in 2018 and will continue to provide high-level service that complements New Orleans’ natural hospitality and vibrant energy. We hold ourselves to high standards and work to exceed expectations.”
With two state-of-the-art cruise terminals located close to the historic French Quarter and other local attractions, a majority of passengers choose to stay in New Orleans for a night or two before or after their trips, making a cruise from New Orleans “two vacations in one.”
As demand for cruises from Port NOLA continues to grow, cruise lines are responding by deploying newer ships with more capacity to homeport in New Orleans, the port said.
Royal Caribbean International returns to New Orleans and will homeport the 2,500-passenger Vision of the Seas that will sail seasonal seven-night itineraries starting in December 2018.
Norwegian Cruise Line will replace the Norwegian Pearl by deploying the largest cruise vessel to ever sail out of New Orleans with the 4,000-passenger Norwegian Breakaway in November 2018. Next year, the Norwegian Getaway will replace the Breakaway.
Carnival Cruise Line will increase its capacity on its short cruise program in 2019 by replacing the Carnival Triumph with the Carnival Valor, a 3,000-passenger ship. Carnival will also replace the Carnival Dream with the Carnival Glory that same year.
In September 2018, American Cruise Lines will increase its New Orleans-homeported inland river cruise vessels with the launch of the 190-passenger American Song, the first in a new modern riverboat series.
“Homeporting newer and larger cruise ships in 2018 adds to our city’s excitement as we celebrate our 300th birthday,” said Christian. “This is great news for tourists, residents and the region’s hospitality industry.”