The Australian cruise industry has been growing rapidly over the past few years, and recently attention has been shifting to the major port city of Melbourne. P&O Cruises have recently announced that it is planning for its largest Victorian cruise program to date, which will make Melbourne one of the country’s cruising hubs.
With energy and excitement quickly building, Melbourne is soon to be a main cruising destination and hotspot in Australia, with P&O cruises planning 15 roundtrip cruises from the city. The upcoming season is projected to be a record breaking one, with the latest financial estimates putting an impressive $15 million projected boost to the local economy through this program alone.
The new plans show that P&O’s premier Pacific Jewel ship will be in Melbourne starting December 2015 to February 2016 and the exquisite Pacific Eden ship will be sailing from the city during February to March 2016. This latest move by P&O helps confirm Melbourne’s status as a popular cruise destination and also confirm it has potential to become a major cruise capital with regional, interstate and South Pacific departures.
It’s an exciting time not only for the people of Melbourne, but also for the tourism industry as a whole, as hotels, restaurants and transport operators look set to reap the benefits of this sudden influx of ships.
Melbourne has always attracted a fair amount of Cruise tourism from passengers who stop there for major sporting events such as the Australian Open, International Cricket matches and the Melbourne Cup, but now the city is on track to take a larger share of the fly-cruise market too, whereby passengers take a flight to join up with ships departing on cruises from various cities.
P&O Cruises’ CEO Ann Sherry believes the adding of two more vessels to their fleet will offer Victorians a greater range of cruise holidays which will be a particular hit with families and young couples. “Holiday makers will now be able to choose from longer cruises like our Christmas escape to the South Pacific through to the shorter getaways to beautiful Australian destinations like Kangaroo Island” she said.
Images sourced via P&O Cruises Media Center and Flickr Creative Commons. Credit P&O Cruises and Ashwin.