MSC Cruises goes Atlantic Alliance and receives TRIPLE A-Award 2014

SEPTEMBER 25, 2013

During the bi-annual “Atlantic Alliance Itinerary Breakfast” at the Grand Elysse in Hamburg on the occasion of Seatrade Europe 2013, the Atlantic Alliance honored MSC Cruises with the “Triple A” – Award 2014.

Hamburg, 25th of September 2013. The 2013 cruising season was again a record year for the member ports of the Atlantic Alliance. A total passenger volume of 2,5 million throughout the 18 ports equated to a 13,6 percent increase compared to the previous year (2012: 2,2 million passengers). Meanwhile the total number of port calls within the Atlantic Alliance has now reached 1.400.

Also extremely positive is the outlook for the future, which again promises further growth for the 2014 season. The general conditions are excellent due to the high potential source markets. From the total 6,26 million European cruise passengers in 2012, 71,65 percent were sourced by Atlantic Alliance countries, equating to 4,506 million cruise passengers. With a total population of 298,71 million inhabitants in the Atlantic Alliance countries, this is a market penetration of only 1,5 percent. When this is combined with the trend towards “home-to-home” cruises things look very favourable for the development of additional cruises within the region.

Helping to boost the development of the internal source market has been the introduction of interporting calls by a number of cruise lines in the Atlantic Alliance region. Interporting is where a cruise ship embarks and disembarks passengers at a number of ports on any given itinerary offering a greater range of departure points and accessing a wider "local" market. An interporting call increases the benefits for the destinations through more pre or post cruises opportunities. It also allows ports with smaller terminals to accommodate embarkation and disembarkation operations. Furthermore it increases the economic revenues for ports and destinations, allows ports to be known for future full turnaround operations, gives passengers more choices to their vacations and finally travel agents can offer more options for their clients. All in all, an interporting call pays an important contribution not only to the port, but also to the destination and to the local cruise industry in general.

Therefore it’s time to give special recognition to the cruise company that has scheduled the most interporting calls within the Atlantic Alliance member ports in 2013. The ‘Triple A’ Award this year goes to: MSC Cruises

MSC Cruises counts in total 101 interporting calls within the member ports of the Atlantic Alliance during the cruise season 2013. The MSC Opera for example did the Atlantic Alliance costal route by cruising up and down between IJmuiden and Lisbon and hence including five of the Atlantic Alliance countries: United Kingdom, Netherlands, Spain, Portugal and France. Ports such as Le Havre offered a special entertainment program to welcome cruise passengers.