Archive for the ‘Cruise Tourism Sri Lanka’ Category

Sri Lanka Tourism joins hands with Ports Authority to develop cruise tourism

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Sri Lanka Tourism, in collaboration with the Sri Lanka Ports Authority, held an informative meeting to discuss on a strategic direction for cruise tourism which is a niche market for the tourism industry, to bring high end travellers.

The meeting was chaired by Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau Chairman Paddy Withana and included Sri Lanka Ports Authority Chairman Dhammika Ranatunga, members of the Cruise Development Committee of the Sri Lanka Association of Inbound Tour Operators (SLAITO), officials from the Sri Lanka Navy, Sri Lanka Ports Authority, Sri Lanka Shipping Corporation and Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau.

Withana stressed on the fact of Sri Lanka having the potential of being an exclusive destination for cruise tourism in future. He said: “I’m sure the private sector can facilitate, together with Customs, Department of Immigration and Irrigation, and the rest of the Government organisations.” He further expressed that in 2016, at least 60 vessels are due to arrive at Sri Lankan ports.

He said it is considered a good move because of the involvement of different ministries, and private sector organisations. “When it comes to cruise terminals, ports get involved. So it’s important for the key agencies to get together, understand their concerns, and get all these together and work out a plan to go forward. We want to be a maritime hub; that means we have to look at all the port related industries and develop all industries. We look forward to go in this direction.”

Thus this effort by Sri Lanka Tourism will create another pathway to establish Sri Lanka as a cruise destination.

In addition to the discussion, an informative presentation was made afterwards by one of the Cruise Development Committee Members, depicting the necessity of using Sri Lanka as a destination for passenger ships. Sri Lanka has a line-up of natural harbours such as Colombo, Trincomalee, Hambantota and Galle. Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau, together with Sri Lanka Ports Development Authority, will be participating in the Sea Trade Cruise Global in March 2017, in USA, which is the largest cruise event happening there.

The meeting was held subsequently to the visit of Claudius Dosecle, for the International Maritime Conference held in Sri Lanka. He highlighted on the efficiency of the Colombo harbour being an important stop by for Sea cruises.

Source : http://www.ft.lk/article/575068/Sri-Lanka-Tourism-joins-hands-with-Ports-Authority-to-develop-cruise-tourism

Global cruise operator says SL is ready for upmarket luxury tourism

Sri Lanka is ready for upmarket luxury tourism and should capitalize on it, said an authority on global cruise tourism. Deployment of Crystal Cruises USA Vice President Claudius Docekal made this observation during a meeting with the Tourism Development and Christian Religious Affairs Minister John Amaratunga at the Tourism Ministry recently.

Tourism Development, Christian Religious Affairs and Lands Minister John Amaratunga making a presentation to Deployment of Crystal Cruises USA Vice President Claudius Docekal at the ministry recently. Docekal was accompanied by Aitken Spence Travels Managing Director Nalin Jayasundera and SLAITO Cruise Committee membersDocekal was in the country to deliver the keynote address on ‘Cruise and luxury air travel’ at the recently concluded Maritime Conference held in Colombo. Docekal’s visit was arranged and coordinated by the cruise committee of the Sri Lanka Association of Inbound Tour Operators (SLAITO) together with the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau.

Docekal assured Amaratunga that he would include Sri Lanka in future Crystal Cruise calls for their 900 and 1000 passenger ships and also their luxury aircraft to Sri Lanka. Amaratunga while thanking Docekal for the confidence placed in Sri Lanka noted that the arrival of Crystal Cruises and flights to the country would definitely raise the profile of Sri Lanka’s luxury travel market.

Crystal Cruises is a major global operator in the luxury travel segment. It presently owns and operates three luxury vessels, new 200-guest Superyachts as well as 1,000-guest exclusive class of ships that will come on line in 2019. In addition to operating ocean cruises, Crystal launched Crystal River Cruises in July this year with the debut of the re-imagined Crystal Mozart. In 2017 and 2018, it will introduce a total of four new 110-guest river yachts.

Crystal Cruises recently expanded into air travel and presently operates a luxury Global-express private aircraft under Crystal Luxury Air. Crystal Luxury Air will be the first in the luxury travel industry to offer around-the-world trips on the world’s most advanced twin-aisle Boeing 777200LR Business Jet. This 350 seat aircraft is currently being configured to just 84 seats bringing absolute luxury to air travel.

During his stay in Sri Lanka, Docekal visited four major ports in the country, namely Colombo, Galle, Hambantota and Trincomalee. He was pleasantly surprised to find out the depth of the ports, especially in Colombo, where the depth is between 18 to 23 meters, Hambantota at 16 meters and Trincomalee at 12.5 meters.

“This is a major advantage over the regional competition to attract the larger cruises if only marketed effectively and also the diversity of the four port locations, which is unique compared to the options available for the cruises in the region,” he noted.

Docekal also visited Yala National Park, Udawalawa National Park, Polonnaruwa, Sigiriya, Dambulla, Kandy, Nuwara Eliya, the elephant orphanage and southern and eastern beaches by road as well as by air during his short stay. He was impressed with the authenticity and diversity of the attractions within a small island setting.

Visiting Sri Lanka after 20 years, Docekal was delighted with the upscale products offered by international chain hotels and luxury boutique resorts across the country. “This will help promote the luxury Crystal brand in Sri Lanka especially destinations where Sri Lanka is not yet known for luxury cruise and air tourism,” he observed.

In order to make Sri Lanka a wellknown turnaround destination he felt that it was vital to clone the concept of the service and architecture of the luxury cruises, also commonly known as the luxury floating resorts, on the ground.

Determined to support Sri Lanka, Docekal noted that the country must reposition itself as a destination that provides an authentic island experience at a deserving price. “Sri Lanka being an island destination must be aware of how many it can accommodate without harming the culture and the environment,” he pointed out.

“The first impression is very important,” noted Docekal adding that the view from the passenger pier at the Colombo Port should be more attractive. “Inexpensive improvements such as painting some of the buildings that could be seen from the passenger pier and improved road ways with clearly marked signage will be a good start.”

He also suggested allocating a functional area that could be used for turnaround ships up to 1000 passengers, adding that a dedicated terminal is not the need of the hour.

Docekal pointed out that luxury tour operators would not recommend any internal road transportation that lasted more than two hours as a basic standard. He felt rail transportation or domestic airports could be a great alternative to the congested roads considering the available infrastructure.

Source : http://epaper.dailymirror.lk/epaper/viewer.aspx

Aitken Spence Travels organises familiarisation tour for prime Indian cruise operator Micato

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Aitken Spence Travels organisers FAM tour to Prime Indian Cruise Operator MICATO 

Aitken Spence Travels, the largest destination management company in Sri Lanka, hosted Micato, a premier cruise operator from India recently.

Micato and Aitken Spence Travels count over 25 years of doing business together to deliver premium shore excursion experiences for cruise passengers.

The group was extended a gracious welcome by the staff of Heritance Negombo, the luxury five- star property owned and managed by the Aitken Spence Group.

The visit was a holiday cum educational tour including a workshop in Colombo for the visiting Micato staff. The delegation also engaged in a sight-seeing activity in and around Colombo and the iconic cultural hub of Galle. It is envisaged that the personal experience gained from this visit would enhance the product knowledge of Micato staff to further promote Destination Sri Lanka even among the high end clientele. “We are delighted to have hosted the visiting party from Micato, a top of the line operator that we have maintained close ties with for two decades. We are happy to have been given the opportunity to further familiarise them with the splendour of our island and I’m sure, the visit was a great experience for everyone. Visits from top global operators like Micato are an integral part of promoting destination Sri Lanka and I’m glad to have had many such opportunities in the recent past,” commented Aitken Spence Travels Vice President Prasanjit Perera who heads the UK, Nordic and Cruise markets.

Aitken Spence Travels has been in business for over 39 years and serves a diverse portfolio at the corporate and leisure sector alike and features a variety of business units that specialise in the areas of Culture, Nature and Adventure, Shore Excursions, Wellness and Luxury Travel.

Source : http://www.ft.lk/article/573421/Aitken-Spence-Travels-organises-familiarisation-tour-for-prime-Indian-cruise-operator-Micato

Lanka tapping global cruise passenger market

Sri Lanka is slowly but surely tapping the global cruise market, an official from the Ceylon Shipping Corporation said. The global cruise passenger market which was 19.1 million in 2010 is predicted to be 24 million by 2016 and Asia including Sri Lanka should try to attract this market.

Asian cruise passenger volume nearly doubled to almost 1.4 million in 2014, from 775,000 in 2012, according to a report by the Cruise Lines International Association. Asia had a passenger capacity of 2.2 million in 2015.

In February, the Hambantota Port received MS Rotterdam, a luxury cruise ship from the Netherlands while several other globe cruises called over at the Colombo Port regularly including Royal Caribbean cruises.

In a bid to promote the Colombo harbour The Colombo Fashion Week swimwear show will be hosted at the ECT Terminal.

The total economic benefits from the industry were US $ 119.9 billion last year with 939,232 Jobs and $39.3 billion as wages and salaries. It was estimated that the demand for cursing has increased by 68%in the last ten years.

There were 471 cruise ships in 2015 and this year 27 more are to be added. Between 2008 and 2014, cruise travel outpaced general leisure travel in the U.S. by 22%.

Source : http://www.dailynews.lk/?q=2016/06/10/business/84292

Sri Lanka attracts more cruise liners

A media release stated that the local cruise industry has since 1980 experienced an average annual passenger growth rate of approximately 7.2 per cent per annum.

Sri Lanka will play host to nearly 33 cruise liners this year which are scheduled to call at local ports, a media release stated recently.

Considering the growth of the cruise tourism, an important niche segment, Sri Lanka Tourism participated at the Seatrade Cruise Global 2016 with three local operators at the Broward Country Convention Center in Fort Lauderdale, Florida in USA March 14 to 17.

A media release stated that the local cruise industry has since 1980 experienced an average annual passenger growth rate of approximately 7.2 per cent per annum.

The most important characteristics of the Cruise Tourism segment is that: they are a “Luxury” form of “Mass Tourism” with high spending capacity and cruisers are not travellers, not mere tourists and well- travelled all over the world, and they like to explore around the world to get more experience, the release said.

Cruises are relatively high spenders, critical influencers and have the potential to improve tourism multipliers through “word of mouth referral marketing, returning for holidays with “top of the mind recall” as well as generating more economic benefits of significance in the local value chain.

Seatrade Cruise Global is the cruise industry’s premier global event which brings together every facet of the business including cruise lines, suppliers, travel agents and partners.

It is an opportunity to showcase products and services of cruise operations to the cruise industry buyers and decision makers, the release said.

Source : http://epaper.dailymirror.lk/epaper/viewer.aspx

Sri Lanka at Seatrade Cruise Global 2016, Fort Lauderdale, USA

Untitled-1Considering the growth of cruise tourism, an important niche segment, Sri Lanka Tourism participated at the Seatrade Cruise Global 2016 with industry stakeholders. The event was held at the Broward Country Convention Center in Fort Lauderdale, Florida in USA together with three Sri Lankan cruise operating companies from 14 to 17 March.

The cruise industry is the fastest growing category in the leisure travel market. Since 1980, the industry has experienced an average annual passenger growth rate of approximately 7.2% per annum. A cruise product is diversified. Throughout its history, the industry has responded to vacation desires of its guests and embraced innovation to develop new destinations, new ship designs, and diverse on-board amenities, facilities and services, plus wide- ranging show side activities. Cruise lines have also offered their guests new cruise themes and voyage lengths to meet the changing vacation of today’s travellers.

The most important characteristics of the cruise tourism segment is that they are a ‘luxury’ form of ‘mass tourism’ with high spending capacity and cruisers are not travellers, not mere tourists and well-travelled all over the world and they like to explore around the world to get more experience.

Cruisers are relatively high spenders, critical influencers and have the potential to improve tourism multipliers through ‘word of mouth referral marketing’, returning for holidays with ‘top of the mind recall’ as well as generating more economic benefits of significance in the local value chain.

Seatrade Cruise Global is the cruise industry’s premier global event and its organisers guarantee to bring together every facet of the business including cruise lines, suppliers, travel agents and partners at the event. It is an opportunity to showcase products and services of cruise operations to the cruise industry buyers and decision makers.

In the current development of the cruise industry in the world, there are approximately 33 cruise liners expected to visit to Sri Lanka during year 2016 combining with other ports in Sri Lanka.

Source : http://www.ft.lk/article/535434/Sri-Lanka-at-Seatrade-Cruise-Global-2016–Fort-Lauderdale–USA#sthash.gvCmoOVT.dpuf

SLTPB to capitalise on cruise tourism

Cruise tourism, an attractive prospect which has been under the radar thus far, will get a revamp this year around as SLTPB has identified up to 50 cruises which will dock in three main ports in the country.

According to SLTPB Director Destination Social Responsibility Indrajith Silva, the average docking period for a cruise is about one day.

“These cruises have around 330 passengers and we are planning to increase awareness about our tourism offerings when they dock in Sri Lanka. Already this is happening as we have some tour operators who take these foreigners around the country; we want to fine tune this. The most important fact we should understand is that all these passengers are big spenders; if not they won’t be in a cruise and we have to grasp that opportunity.”

According to Sri Lanka Ports Authority Data, 41 cruises are scheduled to arrive at Sri Lanka from March onwards of which 29 will dock at Colombo port, five at Galle, three at Hambantota and one will be anchored at Trincomalee port. Moreover during January to February 10 cruises have berthed at Sri Lankan ports.

Source : http://www.ft.lk/article/529938/SLTPB-to-capitalise-on-cruise-tourism#sthash.l6JymH1n.dpuf