Seattle again tops 1m passenger moves, eyes new biggest cruise ship

In 2019, Ovation of the Seas will become the first Quantum-class ship to sail the West Coast In 2019, Ovation of the Seas will become the first Quantum-class ship to sail the West Coast PHOTO: Meyer Werft

In this, its 20th year handling cruise ships, the Port of Seattle welcomed 1,114,888 revenue passengers, the second year in a row of more than 1m passenger movements.

More growth is expected in 2019 with the arrival of the Royal Caribbean's Ovation of the Seas, the first Quantum-class ship to sail the West Coast. The 168,660gt vessel will just outsize the 167,725gt sister ships Norwegian Bliss, this year's record-setter, and Norwegian Joy, redeploying from China.

Economic clout

Cruising's continued growth 'points to a bright future,' port commission president Courtney Gregoire, said, adding: 'We are proud that each homeported cruise vessel brings approximately $2.7 million for our local economy. Through innovation and collaboration, we continue to work with our partners to make this the greenest port in the nation.'

The 2018 passenger movements were a 4% increase over 2017's 1,071,594.

According to the port, cruising is responsible for more than 4,000 jobs, $501m in annual business revenue and $18.9m annually in state and local tax revenues. With an estimated $2.7m from each ship, total revenue for the region surpasses $500m each cruise season.

2019 homeporting ships

Ovation of the Seas' Alaska cruises will depart Fridays from Pier 91, while Norwegian Joy and the Norwegian Bliss will sail Saturdays and Sundays, respectively, from Pier 66.

Holland America Line's Eurodam and Oosterdam will embark Saturdays and Sundays, while Amsterdam sails 14-day cruises, on Mondays, all from Pier 91.

Princess Cruises' Ruby Princess and Star Princess will depart Saturdays and Sundays from Pier 91.

Carnival Legend will sail Tuesdays, and Celebrity Sostice Fridays, both from Pier 91.

Oceania Cruises' Regatta will operate a variety of itineraries from Pier 66.

Posted 01 November 2018

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Anne Kalosh

Editor, Seatrade Cruise News & Senior Associate Editor Seatrade Cruise Review