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1 Sep 2016
Cruise New Zealand’s latest economic impact report shows approximately 164,800 cruise ship passengers visited Wellington last summer, adding an estimated $58 million to the region’s economy.
Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency (WREDA) General Manager, Destination & Marketing Adele Fitzpatrick said cruise passengers are a valuable segment of the visitor market.
“We’re talking the equivalent of five-and-a-half full houses at Westpac Stadium, all looking to spend money in the region. The key is to provide a variety of great value experiences, and make them easily accessible during a visit of less than a day. Wellington does exceptionally well at this.”
Ms Fitzpatrick says the economic impact from cruise ship visits was felt broadly through the economy
“Naturally, pre-booked tour products and Wellington’s visitor attractions are high on passengers’ to-do lists. And many will grab a meal in a café and shop for gifts or souvenirs. But they’ll also purchase things like a new memory card from a camera shop, a bottle of local wine from the supermarket, or more sunscreen for the kids.”
Ms Fitzpatrick says the volunteer Wellington City Ambassadors were instrumental in ensuring cruise visits were successful for both passengers and local businesses.
“We manage this amazing team of over 100 proud Wellingtonians who provide a friendly welcome and knowledgeable guidance to our passengers every cruise day. This makes it easier for passengers to make the most value out of their day in Wellington, and vice versa.”
We’re talking the equivalent of five-and-a-half full houses at Westpac Stadium, all looking to spend money in the region.
The 2016/17 cruise season begins on October 5th, when the Radiance of the Seas arrives in port, carrying up to 2,146 passengers. This summer Wellington will also host the largest cruise ship ever to visit New Zealand, when Royal Carribean’s Quantum Class vessel 'Ovation of the Seas' makes three scheduled visits. Ms Fitzpatrick said Wellington was ready to welcome this 350m vessel and her complement of 5,000 passengers.
“Thanks to Wellington’s natural deepwater harbour and CentrePort’s investment in facilities, Ovation can actually berth and disembark passengers onto the wharf here. This means her passengers will spend more time enjoying Wellington on the ground, rather than being ferried on small tender vessels, as required in some other New Zealand ports.”
Ovation of the Seas is scheduled to make her first visit of the season to Wellington on December 23rd.