The Commercial Manager at the Port of Las Palmas, Juan F. Martin, said that during the pandemic, the port has been working on its measures and health protocols to give cruise services in its terminals the most rigorous health safety conditions.
“As announced in March, the Port Authority of Las Palmas has launched a public tender to select a company interested in investing and managing a new cruise ship terminal in the port of Las Palmas (Gran Canaria), in addition to improving the current facilities in the ports of Arrecife (Lanzarote) and Puerto del Rosario (Fuerteventura). This new public cruise ship terminal in Las Palmas and facilities have to operate in an open regime to the general traffic,” said Martin.
According to him, the investment is estimated to be 20-25 million euros, and the concession is for a period of up to 40 years. The deadline for submitting a tender was June 30, 2021.
The Port of Las Palmas best fits in cruise itineraries as a turnaround port, said Martin. Seventy percent of its cruise activity is through homeporting.
“(This is) due to its great connectivity and good road communications (the distance between the port and the international airport is 25 km), as well as a wide and varied range of accommodation facilities (before and after cruise),” he explained.
Despite most cruise ports having virtually zero calls throughout the pandemic, the Port of Las Palmas says its reduction in operation was not as dramatic.
“The resumption of cruise activity in Spain took place in Canary ports in November 2020 and has been maintained since then as one of the rather few cruise itineraries in the world in which the port of Las Palmas has been the operating base for European cruise ships, such as TUI Cruises, AIDA Cruises, Hapag-Lloyd, Mystic and Nicko Cruises,” Martin noted.
According to him, the port had 560 calls in the winter season of 2018-2019, 428 calls in the 2019-2020 winter season, 202 calls in the winter season of 2020-2021.
However, in the winter season of 2021-2022, the operation will ramp up to its highest number in years – 659 calls.