The cruise industry’s total value to the national economy has increased 11.2%, contributing A$5.2bn in direct and indirect output during the 2018-19 financial year.
Compiled by AEC Group, the independent assessment found that 18,135 full-time jobs were supported by the industry, a 6.6% increase on the previous year.
3.8m visit days
The 1,240 cruise ship visits led to 3.8m passenger and crew visit days, resulting in direct expenditure by passengers, crew and cruise lines totalling A$2.5bn.
‘The strong growth in the economic contribution to the economy has been driven primarily by increased spending by cruise passengers,’ CLIA Australasia & Asia MD Joel Katz said.
Katz said a lack of berthing space in Sydney has made it difficult for the cruise industry to increase its capacity in Australia, but this has been countered by significant increases in the amount of spending by cruise passengers.
‘Total cruise passenger spending in 2018-19 increased 17.4% on the previous year to reach almost A$1.4 billion,’ he said.
‘Cruise passengers now spend an average of A$387 each for every day they are on shore in Australia, which provides enormous benefits to businesses, like hotels, restaurants, tour operators and retailers.
Remote ports benefit
ACA CEO Jill Abel said cruise ships had visited 47 ports around Australia last financial year, bringing tourism to some of the most remote coastal communities in the country.
‘The economic impact of cruising is not only enormous and growing, it is also reaching locations that might otherwise be difficult for visitors to access,’ Abel said.