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Start of the cruise season heralded with Majestic Princess

The largest Princess Cruises ship, Majestic Princess, steamed into Auckland for the first time this last weekend to begin the new cruise season.

With a height of 68.3 metres (over 9 times taller than Paeroa’s iconic L&P bottle), and carrying 3560 guests to sample Auckland’s food wine and activities, the Majestic Princess will visit Auckland again 10 more times between October 2018 and March 2019.

This summer will see a new record for Princess Cruises, as the cruise line will be carrying more passengers to New Zealand than any other cruise operator. Almost 100,000 guests to the country over the 2018/19 season will be coming on Princess Cruises ships, or every 1 in 4 cruise ship visitors.

It’s their largest New Zealand season in history, making Princess Cruises the fastest-growing cruise line in New Zealand.

The Majestic Princess visits highlight the importance of the cruise sector to New Zealand tourism and the economic benefits it delivers. Statistic NZ figures show the value of cruise in the 2017-2018 season to be $434 million.

“New Zealand’s cruise sector is growing at a much faster rate than the rest of the world, and is projected to become a $1 billion sector in the next decade,” says New Zealand Cruise Association Chairman Debbie Summers.

“That growth is being driven by larger vessels, more cruises, and more passengers both embarking and disembarking at New Zealand ports. The cruise sector is committing to working on infrastructure with our communities and government to make sure this growth stays sustainable.”

Association Chief Executive Kevin O’Sullivan says the growth of the country’s cruise sector and relationships with international cruise lines benefits communities throughout New Zealand.

“The Majestic Princess will visit New Zealand ports 88 times this season, calling in to Fiordland, Dunedin, Akaroa, Wellington, Napier Tauranga, Auckland and the Bay of Islands. The swell of visitors to these regions creates a huge economic boost as well as showing off some of our ports, cities, and towns to visitors from all over the world.”

The Majestic Princess berths at Princes Wharf when it arrives in Auckland, but Kevin O’Sullivan says considerable planning was required to enable such a large ship to dock, and cruise ship captains are looking forward to the proposed dolphins at Queen’s Wharf, which will cater better for the larger ships.

Princess Cruises’ summer season is expected to inject around $100 million into New Zealand’s economy.

© Scoop Media

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