Kai Tak Cruise Terminal Hoping for a Strong Restart

A double luxury call at Kai Tak with Silversea and Regent ships visiting Hong Kong.

There are high hopes for Hong Kong and the Kai Tak Cruise Terminal when the world returns to normal, as Hong Kong represents the 12th largest outbound tourism market, according to the United Nations World Tourism Organization.

By the end of October, a new elevated walkway with a hanging garden and a small park will be ready for visitors at the terminal, said Jeff Bent, managing director, Worldwide Cruise Terminals, manager of the Kai Tak complex, allowing for harbor views and nearby connectivity to apartment buildings, as well as more commercial real estate under construction.

“Roads and transportation in the Kai Tak district have been improved,” he said. “We went from a single-lane access road to a dual two-lane road in early 2020. A Kai Tak metro station was inaugurated in February, with bus service connecting it to the cruise terminal. So public transportation is now quite good.”

August saw the opening of another crossing between Hong Kong and mainland China, making it seven crossings, but this is only the second with so-called “one-stop” immigration clearance, and highway access from both sides.

According to Bent, it nicely compliments the recent high speed rail and the Hong Kong – Zhuhai – Macao Bridge. If that wasn’t enough, Hong Kong airport has essentially reached peak traffic and a third runway will be operational by 2024 to add more capacity.

Bent said that when the cruise industry does return, he expects a similar customer lineup with changes to deployment patterns.

“We expect that it will remain an attractive location for homeporting,” Bent said, “for the local source market as well as for Southern China and fly-cruise source markets.”

Excerpt from Cruise Industry News Quarterly Magazine: Fall 2020

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