The Port of Cork Company (PoCC) has announced its 2024 cruise schedule, indicating a 23% increase in cruise ship visits over the previous year, according to a press release.
The port is expected to welcome 116 cruise vessels between April and November, up from 94 ships in 2023.
This significant growth in cruise traffic contributes greatly to the local economy, with cruise tourism estimated to bring in €17 million, according to a statement.
Conor Mowlds, chief commercial officer at the Port of Cork Company, stated: “We are thrilled to see the cruise industry is continuing to thrive. The substantial increase in bookings for 2024 reflects the collective efforts and united approach to the development and support of cruise activities from the Port, City, County and local businesses – highlighting Cork as a premier cruise destination.”
Niamh McCarthy, managing director of Excursions Ireland, added: “This positive news not only reflects the growing appeal of the Port of Cork as a popular cruise destination but also signifies the dynamic opportunities for tourism and trade businesses to further enhance the visitor experience. As the leading provider of ground services to international cruise lines visiting Ireland, we are committed to delivering exceptional shore excursions, ensuring that each visitor to Cork enjoys a memorable and enriching experience. We look forward to contributing to the success of Cork as a flourishing cruise hub and creating lasting impressions for every guest we have the pleasure of hosting.”
Toddy Stafford, president of Cobh and Harbour Chamber, also anticipates the busy season ahead and commented: “The increase in cruise calls this year is a testament to the collaboration between Port of Cork and local stakeholders and businesses. We eagerly anticipate another successful season that will not only boost local trade and tourism through the influx of passengers and crew but also bring a wave of visitors to Cobh to view these majestic cruise ships in Cork Harbour.”
The season will commence with the arrival of the Sirena from Oceania on April 1.
Highlighting the season will be the MSC Virtuosa, notable for its length of 331 meters and capacity to accommodate almost 8,000 passengers and crew.