BTA: Cruise Ship Boost For 2017 America’s Cup

November 6, 2015

[Written by Don Burgess]

Bermuda is set to get a cruise ship boost to accommodate more tourists during the America’s Cup in June 2017, according to the Bermuda Tourism Authority.

One cruise line was in Bermuda over the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series event, and the Bermuda Tourism Authority said there could be at least one announcement next month about the added berths.

The Bermuda Tourism Authority’s Pat Phillip-Fairn, chief product and experience officer, told Bernews that there has been much interest from various cruise lines to add trips to Bermuda for the America’s Cup.

Slideshow of various cruise ships in Bermuda:


She said. “As part of our outreach for the cruise ship strategy we included discussions about the America’s Cup. And now interest has turned to some proposals, which are on the table.”

She added the America’s Cup opportunity “has brought so much attention to Bermuda, that even our traditional partners are looking at the destination differently and are seeing additional opportunities.”

She said the BTA are in talks with five different cruise lines to take advantage of the America’s Cup. She some of them may end up changing their itineraries so that it includes the weekend so passengers can watch the final on Sunday.

“We also have some occasional callers who are looking at some America’s Cup itineraries,” she added. Mrs. Phillip-Fairn said they could end up coming for both the Challengers finals and America’s Cup finals as well.

The lines are looking at stationing their ships in Hamilton and St. George’s as well as Dockyard.

“The ones that are looking at changing their itineraries are looking at Hamilton and St. George’s and we’re very pleased about that.”

Mrs. Phillip-Fairn said there were some logistical concerns about getting people out to the races from St. George’s “but it’s very good for the town that that is a consideration.”

Video highlights of the 2015 America’s Cup World Series in Bermuda

She said the most exciting possibility involves two lines who are considering docking ships in Bermuda for four weeks with passengers having to fly in and out of the island to get access to the ship.

“People could stay for the entire month and give us additional [room] capacity. We do know our hotel inventory is likely to be completely full.”

Mrs. Phillip-Fairn added Bermuda would benefit in many ways from having the ships berthed here for the entire month. The size of the ships being considered are from 1,300 passengers up to 4,000 passengers.

Glenn Jones, director of public & stakeholder relations for the BTA, added: “The charter option creates another multiplier effect that is untraditional for Bermuda.

“Their onboard stocks will need to be replenished locally because they’re not returning back to US ports, so that’s another benefit for our economy that otherwise wouldn’t be there.”

Mrs. Phillip-Fairn said an announcement could be made shortly.

“We have a lot of very intense work going on right now for 2017. There’s one out of the UK and they are looking to start selling next month so very shortly you’ll see the results of this.”

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Comments (16)

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  1. B.T.A. say, “Cruise Ship Boost For 2017 America’s Cup” Now that’s some more great news B.T.A. / One Bermuda Alliance :-)

    • Smith says:

      How is this great news. Don’t you know cruise ship passengers spend less. They eat all meals on ship.

      • Lois Frederick says:

        The kind of cruise passengers that will be attracted here for AC35 will be high net worth individuals on high end cruise ships. They will contribute more than the average cruise ship passenger. You are right that they will likely eat on the ships, but they will spend on excursions, taxis etc. With a limited number of hotel rooms available, the ships will be additional the hotel rooms, which will all be full. These are exactly the kind of visitors Bermuda needs. They will likely come on a cruise ship and may like it so much that they might return, at a later date, to stay in one of the new 5 star hotels that are about to be built. Don’t forget the head tax that goes to Govt. too. How is that not a good thing?

      • Build a Better Bermuda says:

        Part of those talks would involve temporarily/permanently berthed ships that would act as additional local hotel rooms, the down side is the competition for local hotels (though it is expected that our hotels will be full, so we will need the extra rooms), but on the upside, they would need to acquire constants resources to restock that can be coordinated through local services. Food, fuel, sanitation, transport, and as these would be more of the hotel guest types, they would also be doing more shopping and dining locally. I only hope there will be an increased and later running schedule for the public transport to allow for maximum visitor distribution

  2. Triangle Drifter says:

    What is the word on accomodation for those who want to stay for more than a few days specifically thinking of a chartered ship alonside Hamilton, anchored in Hamilton Harbour, or even in the Little Sound?

  3. Cup Of Tea Anyone? says:

    Better stock up on Tea. cruisers love Tea

  4. stunned... says:

    meanwhile Cuba is identified as an imminent threat to tourism in the Caribbean and Atlantic and what strategic plans do we hear from the BTA…oh wait, they’ll deal with that after 2017…just got to finish this printing.

    • somuchless says:

      They can’t seem to get it right before Cuba opens up. What do you think they’ll do after. Lololol

      • Triangle Drifter says:

        Those with their eyes open have seen Cuba coming for over 20 years. What did the UBP do to prepare? NOTHING. What did the PLP do in 14 years? NOTHING. They made pleasure trips to Cuba on the taxpayers dime. The OBA just got here saddled with a cesspool of problems created by the PLP. Doubt if they have had any time to think about Cuba.

    • Lois Frederick says:

      Well, I guess you were away and unable to access the internet. The BTA has in the past week alone, sent out numerous releases showing us their plans. Just search BTA on Bernews. This cruise ship plan is one of the many great initiatives being lined up. #BDA365

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      Your question highlights a that you haven’t been fully listening to what has been said by the BTA. Firstly, Cuba is going to impact everyone no matter what, they are a largely untapped market from the US, meanwhile visitors from everywhere else in the world have been going there all along, so it will only really be from the US market that we will feel the impact. Recognizing that that is our largest market, we will feel it, but if you had been paying attention you will also know that the BTA, and anyone with an ounce of common sense, acknowledges that we cannot compete for the mass market of low cost travellers, so they are targeting the higher end markets. Now the high end US travellers have been going to Cuba for a long time to begin with anyway as they can afford the round about flights that it takes to get there from the US, so there will not be much of a blimp on that market. Now despite the declining tourism number, this strategy is showing effect, as spending has been up. For the cruise ship market, this will have more of an impact, but as most of ships come from the northeast, those ships will not likely be changing courses too much as they are too far away to be offering Cuban voyages, but we will need to keep their interest.
      Now, what they need to do is start campaigning higher in the markets outside the US, cause frankly, as the US mass tourists flood the previously forbidden Cuba, more of the traditional Cuban tourists from elsewhere in the world are going to be looking elsewhere to avoid them.

  5. Never never says:

    Lololol your funny as hell the OBA is the UBP Michael Bob Grant Shawn Moniz Patrica please stop acting brand new you people are supposed to be the smart ones SMDH contrary to what you been told it’s the same bull crap

    • Yummy says:

      May I suggest that you read a little more to get to the meat of issues and not rely on what you have been told, because its just not working.

  6. JUNK YARD DOG says:

    Marsh Folly now Dockyard Folly !

    I am now convinced that money does grow on trees !

    What are you doing to the Dockyard south basin ?

    Have you all gone mad ? or is just poor judgement?

  7. With them once again not appreciating someone willing to spend millions of dollars to turn the Progressive Labour Party’s wrongs into that right that will benefit many! It’s them who oppose the PROGRESS being made under the One Bermuda Alliance as stated in this letter below:
    “The beach accessibility question has been asked and clearly answered a number of times previously – both in open community consultations and apolitical Government press releases. The public will continue to have reasonable access.
    Unlike the former Government which evicted the beach concession tenant, prematurely demolished the club house, left the course in ruins and spent millions to blow up the old hotel, the OBA are working to secure jobs and inward investment.
    Unfortunately the Progressive Labour Party and their “talking heads ignore these facts” and aggressively run from their own track record of incompetence as neither helps to further a campaign of disinformation and selfish political gain.
    The P.L.P have betrayed and continue to betray hardworking Bermudians. History is clear on this. Our debt burden is tangible proof of their ineptitude.”

  8. Annoyed says:

    Am I the only one that is sick of hearing about America’s Cup??