The cruise industry’s multi-billion pound contribution to the British economy continued to grow in 2014, according to a Europe-wide report released today by the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA). The cruise industry’s direct contribution to the UK economy, including items such as goods and services purchased by the cruise lines, and the salaries of their employees, grew to £2.247 billion.
The industry created around another 800 jobs in the UK in 2014, taking the total number to 71,222, and accounting for a fifth of all cruise industry jobs across Europe. The UK remains one of Europe’s biggest cruise markets, with a 25.7% share of passenger numbers in 2014 – a year in which 1.64 million British passengers took an ocean cruise.
The port of Southampton retained its position as Europe’s largest embarkation and disembarkation port. However, the London Cruise Terminal, Port of Tilbury, is also seeing a large jump in cruise traffic. 2014 passenger traffic totalled 54,000 and the port is forecasting that this will almost double to 100,000 passengers in 2015, with further growth also expected in 2016.
Other ports predicting an increase in cruise traffic include Liverpool and Bristol Avonmouth both used by CMV. Cruise traffic to islands around the UK mainland is forecast to grow strongly too with cruise traffic through Guernsey port predicted to jump 20% to 130,000 and through Orkney by 17% to 79,000 passengers.
Andy Harmer, Director, CLIA UK & Ireland, says: “Today’s report reaffirms the UK’s position not only as one of the world’s major cruise markets, but as a country which continues to reap multi-billion pound dividends from the cruise industry. Across the UK, ports and the cruise lines that serve them are playing an ever-increasing role in boosting the economies that surround them.”
Written by Mike Hall.