California Cruise Traffic Up Sharply
Wednesday, September 14, 2005
Cruise traffic through California ports has grown 80 percent in the past two years, according to new figures released today by the U.S. Maritime Administration (MARAD). Los Angeles accounted for nearly half of the traffic through California ports, and was up 62 percent in the first half of 2005 from year earlier figures. 89 percent of passengers departing from Los Angeles cruised to Mexico.
Nearly five million passengers sailed on 2,305 North American cruises during the first half of 2005, an increase of 7 percent over the same period in 2004. Reflecting fewer new ship deliveries this year, the growth rate was only half that of the prior year.
Operation of the new U.S.-flag PRIDE OF ALOHA contributed to a 41 percent increase in cruise traffic originating in Honolulu, a figure that will increase with the recent introduction of the PRIDE OF AMERICA. Cruise traffic through New Orleans, Galveston and Mobile was up 38 percent from the first half of 2004, although future figures will reflect the impact of Hurricane Katrina.