“Capacity is just increasing over the last two years,” said Brian Webb, executive director of Cruise Atlantic Canada. “It’s significantly up, easily a new record for the region.”
Fresh off the 2018 season, which eclipsed a record 2017, Webb and his member ports are looking forward to an even bigger 2019.
The increases are coming across the board.
“We are seeing additional calls in the summer, additional calls to small ports and additional calls everywhere,” said Webb.
Port members include the likes of Corner Brook, Halifax, Saint John, Sydney and Charlottetown, as well as smaller ports ranging from Cape Breton to Georgetown. New berths are being built in both Sydney and Charlottetown to accommodate the surge in cruise traffic.
More calls in the summer and spring has been the result of a multi-year effort to convince cruise lines Canada/New England is a viable market outside of fall foliage.
The bulk of the port calls are tied to key homeports – New York, Boston, Cape Liberty, Baltimore, Quebec and Montreal – with the balance coming from trans-Atlantic and repositioning sailings, as well as expedition cruises.
“We are interested in any traffic that expands our season,” said Webb. “We have found a great deal of success working collectively as a region instead of individually. Success in any of these one locations brings success to the rest.”