The Canaries have 25,000 cruise passengers despite the global stoppage
The Canary Islands, which has become the only global destination for cruise ships during the pandemic, has managed to move 25,000 tourists in the last four months, since the shipping companies resumed operations. This is equivalent to 110,000 visitors when all stops in the different islands are taken in to account.
Although this is a positive, it is only 12.5% of the 200,000 net cruise passengers who visited the islands in the same period before Covid, which is more than a million if we count all the Canarian ports they stopped at.
However, this is a great achievement if we take into account that the Canary Islands is the only place in the world where cruise ships have been operating since the pandemic broke out, and that the control model used in the islands has worked, with no outbreaks detected neither among the passengers nor among the crew.
The commercial director of the Port Authority of Las Palmas, Juan Francisco Martín, values the know-how and professionalism of everyone in the industry who has worked with all the measures necessary to make it possible. "From the buses that picked up the tourists, to the guides and the establishments that have cared for the cruise passengers, they have done a great job on all of the islands," says Martín, who recognizes the effort of the cruise companies to keep the sector alive in the islands despite a contained demand that has left occupations at around 50%.
Passengers have been able to leave the ships staying in a bubble to enjoy facilities in all of the islands, with rigorous testing to ensure that no-one brings the coronavirus on board one of the ships. Loro Parque which re-opened to the public yesterday in Puerto De La Cruz, is open exclusively on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from this week for cruise tourists only during the pandemic.
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46 sailings have been carried out around the islands since cruises were authorized in November up until March, and In April 20 more were made (66 in total) and the forecast is to end in June with 95 trips and almost 50,000 cruise passengers.
TUI have lead the way using La Luz in Gran Canaria as its base port, and has operated every Thursday and Friday with two ships, the 'Mein Schiff I' and the 'Mein Schiff II'. Next is Aida, with the 'Aida Perla' and Hapag Lloyd, with the 'Europa II' and finally, Mystic Cruises, with the luxury cruise ship 'World Voyager', which is chartered by the German Nicko Cruises Majestic International. This cruise began operating in mid-April and is making two sailings around the islands, each lasting ten days.