3,000 cruise passengers visited St. Kitts on Tuesday

BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS, JUNE 29TH 2011 (CUOPM) – Nearly 3,000 cruise passengers visited St. Kitts on Tuesday.

The Royal Caribbean Cruise Line’s 2,501-passenger Serenade of the Seas berth at Port Zante with 2,483 passengers and a crew of 855. It arrived from St. Thomas in the United States Virgin Islands and sailed for Aruba late afternoon.

Serenade of the Seas berth at Port Zante in this Keethon France photo

Last Friday, the Carnival Cruise Lines’ 3.050-passenger capacity arrived from St. Lucia with 3,388 passengers and 1,049 crew. It later sailed for St. Maarten.

The Victory next visit is this coming Friday 2nd July, while the Serenade of the Seas is scheduled to make its next call on July 12th.

For the first time in the history of cruise tourism two cruise ships are visiting St. Kitts during the summer making year-round calls to this destination.

Serenade of the Seas and Carnival’s Victory will make a total of 31 calls during the off-season bringing an estimated 88,000 passengers to St. Kitts.

Chairman of the Caribbean Tourism Organsiation (CTO), St. Kitts and Nevis’ Tourism Minister, Sen. the Hon. Richard Skerritt has expressed concern over the continued massive loss of cruise business, particularly from the southern and eastern Caribbean, due to the seasonal repositioning of vessels from the Caribbean to other ports.

The region’s tourism development agency says this practice results in significant economic loss to local businesses and economies during this prolonged period of economic slowdown.

The cruise industry is a significant component of the region’s tourism mix and the Caribbean remains a highly desirable winter cruising destination.

In 2010 the region’s cruise passenger arrivals grew by six percent, continuing the phenomenal growth experienced over the past four decades with the numbers climbing from just over one million cruise visits in 1970 to over 20 million last year.

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