‘Unprecedented Number’ Of Cruise Visitors

April 3, 2024 | 14 Comments

The Ministry of Transport said the “first quarter of 2024 has marked a milestone for Bermuda’s cruise tourism industry” as “Bermuda proudly welcomed an unprecedented number of visitors during this period.”

Minister of Transport Wayne Furbert said  ”A total of 14 cruise ship calls between January and March, brought an estimated 43,114 passengers. This quarter’s visitor numbers are exceptional and reflect Bermuda’s enduring appeal as a premier cruise destination. This sets a new benchmark for the hospitality sector and a promising start to the traditional busy cruise season. ”

“Looking ahead, Bermuda anticipates hosting approximately 578,000 passengers throughout the year, projecting a substantial revenue forecast of $172.4 million from passenger and crew expenditures, and an estimated $26.4 million in passenger taxes, $12 million in transport infrastructure taxes, $7.7 million in visitor fees, and $10.2 million, for a total of estimated economic activity of $228.7 million dollars into Bermuda’s economy underlining the economic vitality generated by our cruise sector.

“In April, we anticipate 22 scheduled cruise ship calls, with an estimated 66,326 visitors expected to arrive, provided there are no cancellations. Despite facing early winter storms, Bermuda has demonstrated resilience and strength, solidifying its position as a preferred cruise destination.

“Tuesday 2 April through Thursday, 4 April, we welcomed the inaugural call of the Ritz Carlton Yacht Collection ‘Evrima’ docking in the City of Hamilton. This brand is leading the way for a new era of ultra-luxury cruising. This call is a homeporting visit whereby 238 guests will disembark on Thursday morning between 6 am and 10 am. Approximately 228 guests will arrive by air to Bermuda to join the ship for departure on Thursday. The No. 5 carpark on Front Street will be used for the disembarkation and embarkation process.

Minister Furbert concluded, “As I stated in the House of Assembly on 8 December 2023, Bermuda has not only weathered the storms but has emerged stronger. As we continue into the remainder of 2024, Bermuda remains committed to providing an exceptional cruise experience, ensuring every visitor leaves with unforgettable memories of our stunning island paradise.”

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  1. Joe Bloggs says:

    “Minister of Transport Wayne Furbert said ”A total of 14 cruise ship calls between January and March, brought an estimated 43,114 passengers. This quarter’s visitor numbers are exceptional ”

    That is all very nice, but cruise ship passengers spend a pitiful amount of money in Bermuda. We used to welcome them as a loss leader, hoping they would come back in the future and spend money. The way things are going, Bermuda has no viable future.

  2. watching says:

    A half a loaf is better than none. While cruise ship visitors don’t usually spend as much as land visitors, they do spend some money, and their taxes and cruise ship fees contribute much to the economy. So while I agree they aren’t the panacea, they still do provide revenue to the economy and to many taxi drivers and the restaurants/gift shops in the cruise ports.

  3. Hilarious! says:

    Cruise visitors are an easy revenue stream for the Government to pay for first-class plane tickets & hotels, limos for ground transportation, and fine dining for all the ministers and our Fearless Leader.

  4. Triangle Drifter says:

    The Minister can huff and puff while strutting around like some head rooster in the chicken coup but he has little to nothing to do with the increased numbers of cruise ships.

    Very few get any real benefit from cruise passengers. Government gets a huge chunk of change in port fees and passenger taxes. Big pay for doing next to nothing.The concessionaire at Horseshoe is making a killing while providing barely two star service. Any of promised upgrades to the building yet? Mini buses do OK shuttling people to Horseshoe. Dockyard based watersports do OK, even after paying huge commissions to the ships. That is about it. They eat on the ship. They sleep on the ship. The last thing the ship wants them to do is spend too much time off of the ship or return as an air visitor.

  5. trufth says:

    Why no comparison of figures from previous years? Pre-covid, say 2019? These numbers don’t mean much if they aren’t compared to years prior.

    I’ll chalk this up to “more spin” unless proven otherwise by the missing data.

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      Spin? I’ll have you know that Wayne Furbert was Minister for Transport in Bermuda in the 1990s under the UBP! 30 years later he is Minister for Transport for the PLP Government. Who has more experience of politics and moving about than Wayne Furbert?

  6. Joey-Bag-O'donuts says:

    Yes, all that is well and good but in the meantime Bermuda is closing hotels and restaurants and putting hundreds or thousands out of work.

    • Ringmaster says:

      There’s more money to get from taxes on cruise ships than taxes paid on minimum wage (expat) workers in hotels and restaurants. PLP Maths 101.

      • Joey-Bag-O'donuts says:

        So, you’re telling me that only expat workers worked the hotels and restaurants? I knew a lot of Bermudians that made real nice living waiting tables and bar tending at some very nice hotels that are now shuttered.

        • Joe Bloggs says:

          Back in the heyday of our tourism days (when the Bermudiana Hotel, Castle Harbour Hotel, Lowes Bermuda Beach Hotel, and Sonesta Beach Hotel still existed, and Elbow Beach Hotel and Southampton Princess Hotel were open for business) Bermudians did work in hotels and restaurants and they did make a good living.

          But in the 21st century we do not have those hotels or associated jobs and we have driven high-earning ex pats out Bermuda. The standards at local restaurants have fallen and a person cannot earn the good living one previously could. Hence we employ ex pats who are willing to work for less money than locals.

        • Ringmaster says:

          No, I’m talking about now. I agree years ago hotels and restaurants were mainly staffed by Bermudians, and jobs were plentiful. So sad to see the difference now.

  7. Borte says:

    Tourism is 4% of our GDP, nothing to see here, it’s finished.

    Let’s focus on IB, that’s our meal ticket now.

  8. Triangle Drifter says:

    That was a different time, an age when there was a whole different attitude towards ‘service’ jobs.

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