Cruising is back to DP World Limassol’s Cruise Terminal, said its Commercial Manager Lazaros Charalambous.
“Cruises are going strong until October 2021,” he told Cruise Industry News.
Royal Caribbean, Celestyal, Seabourn, Azamara and Celebrity have all either already returned or are about to return to Cyprus with their ships this summer.
“Moreover, cruise lines have been taking the necessary steps to ensure that COVID-19 does not spread to their cruise ships, with many requiring passengers to be vaccinated or hold a negative PCR test. This has boosted the morale of cruise lovers, who have been itching to get back to the seas for some time now,” said Charalambous.
He added that the Cyprus government has prepared and announced a “rigorous health protocol for cruises, which will add to the momentum of the industry.”
“As it comes to the year 2022, I believe that demand will continue to increase, as more passengers will be vaccinated and keener than ever to travel. I strongly believe that (Cyprus) has great potential to further develop the cruise sector and attract many more cruise lines and passengers,” Charalambous noted. “Cyprus’ stakeholders, including DP World Limassol, are hard at work to promote the safe conduct of cruise tourism and successfully seize the opportunity of the widespread reshuffling happening in the cruising industry because of the pandemic, with a view to establishing the Limassol port as a major cruise hub in the Eastern Mediterranean.”
According to him, DP World Limassol operates a strict environmental policy in an effort to reduce its footprint as much as possible.
“We use energy-efficient processes and products, regularly monitor and seek to improve energy efficiency across our operations, while we have adopted an ‘impact and sustainability’ and recycling policy throughout our business. At the global level, DP World aims to reduce its output per unit of movement by increasing efficiency and promoting clean energy, with the ultimate goal being to create a zero-emission supply chain across our networks,” Charalambous said.
The port also tries to forge partnerships with local organizations and boost its community engagement.
“We regularly join forces with the local municipality as well as civil society organizations like CYMEPA, to carry out a series of activities such as beach clean-ups, supporting them in their efforts to make Limassol a greener city. Our aim is to help Cyprus achieve its sustainability targets by investing in the port’s equipment, digitization and automation. Such investments, boost the port’s efficiency and resilience, helping it reduce its environmental footprint,” Charalambous said.
The port is always assessing the best international practices while monitoring its own facilities to identify areas for improvement, he explained. “Most recently, we opened two duty-free shops within the terminal, providing exclusive offers on luxury items and a comfortable shopping experience. We have (also) upgraded our check-in equipment, and we are working with the local authorities to improve the overall efficiency of the terminal,” explained Charalambous.
He said that he believes that the pandemic has presented the port industry with “an opportunity to embrace digitization and automation.”
“DP World has always heavily invested in state-of-the-art digital equipment and is continuously introducing innovations in terminal operations that boost resilience and automation, thereby allowing us to evolve and enhance the services we offer our customers. Indicatively, at DP World Limassol, we have introduced digital payment solutions, while this past February, we launched the new ZODIAC cloud-based Terminal Operating System (TOS). The migration into ZODIAC TOS was a big milestone for us at DP World Limassol,” he said.
“The new system helps us reduce maintenance costs and improve productivity, while it connects all supply chain participants through a single integrated platform, which provides real-time information on vessel, yard, gate and rail movements,” Charalambous added.