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  • Kyle Bolt

Port of Saint John Visited by 75 Cruise Ships in 2023

When we as New Brunswickers talk about the importance of tourism in the province we don’t always fully understand the impact of the cruise ship industry here. We know about the elaborate ships carrying visitors from around the world docking at the Port of Saint John, and we meet passengers enroute to destinations unknown who have made a quick stop here as we make our way through many of our communities. In my riding in the St. Martins area alone about 15,000 people come to experience the spectacular Bay of Fundy each cruise season. They also head in other directions like Hopewell Rocks, to Kingston for maple sugar and brewery tours, many stay in Saint John for excursions and shopping….they go all over the place by foot or by bus to experience our province. Last year alone 75 cruise ships visited carrying 174,229 passengers and 73,441 crew. Each passenger spent $86.48 on average and together injected about $68 million into the southern New Brunswick economy. And similar numbers are expected this year.

That is big money, which is why last week I took the opportunity to join Port Saint John in Miami for the Seatrade Cruise conference representing over 80 cruise line brands and over 120 countries to help promote our gorgeous province and attract more business. Meeting after meeting, whether it was with executives from Princess Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian, Carnival or others, the message to me was very clear - passengers love the beauty of our unspoiled coastline, fall in love with our nature and adore our people, and they are making plans to come more often. I was just so proud of our tourism offerings, Port Saint John (Craig Bell Estabrooks, Andrew Dixon and Natalie Allaby) for the work they do, the Bay of Fundy’s principal excursion operator Aquila Tours (Beth Hatt, Danielle Timmons and Melanie Colpitts), Ambassatours (Dennis Campbell) for its shore excursion offerings in the region and my tourism staff who were with me to support work with the industry, Cindy Creamer-Rouse and Marcy Barnes.

This is a sector with great opportunity for our province and its tourism businesses. Nowhere can offer the touch we can here in New Brunswick, and that should make us all feel incredibly proud. 🛳️🛳️

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