June cruise numbers up

June 2009 produced a significant hike in cruise arrivals for the second month in a row, up nearly 32 per cent on last year.

But air arrivals for the same month showed a continuation of the downward spiral they have been experiencing every month since September of last year – falling by 13.7 per cent last month.

A consistent decline in cruise arrivals to the Cayman Islands began in early 2007.

The significant boost in cruise passenger numbers last month was directly related to the outbreak of Swine Flu in Mexico, which caused cruise lines to suspend calls to Mexico in May and June. Because of this the Cayman Islands gained extra cruise calls.

In June Cayman received an additional eight calls from Carnival ships, which added an additional 22,474 passengers to Cayman’s figures.

Cayman’s cruise passenger figure for June 2009 was 122,863, up by 29,743 passengers on the previous year.

Between May and June 2009, the total additional passengers received were 47,633 from the 19 additional calls from Carnival ships.

June 2009 had the second highest number of cruise passengers for that month in the past 10 years, the highest being in 2004 with 128,390 passengers.

For the year to date, cruise arrivals are down six per cent, with 54,522 less passengers than that seen for the same period in 2008.

Air arrivals for June of this year were 24,149, down from 27,971 in June of 2008.

2009 is the second lowest performing year for June air arrivals in the past 10 years, with the year immediately following Hurricane Ivan (2005) the worst. The year with the highest number of air arrivals in June was back in 2000 when there were 32,056.

For June 2009, within the key markets, the US was down 14.3 per cent from 2008, Europe was down 7.6 per cent and Canada was down 9.9 per cent.

For the year to date, air arrivals are down 13.3 per cent, down 23,681 passengers from 2008 to 154,640.

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