Colombia’s Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism (MinCIT) announced the reactivation of passenger cruise ship arrivals to Colombia, with a first landing taking place today in Cartagena.
The first cruise liner to return is the all-suite Star Breeze, from Windstar Cruises (above), with a capacity for 312 passengers and 190 crew members. The ship will dock in Cartagena in the middle of a 14-day itinerary, which began in Barbados. Windstar Cruises is a line that operates small luxury cruises in Europe, the South Pacific, the Caribbean and Central America.
This luxury cruise opens the 2021 – 2022 season, which expects has 123 more arrivals, carrying an expected 212,517 passengers, and 101,053 crew, for a total of 313,570 visitors.
“From the Port of Cartagena we give very good news to the country, which benefits the safe economic reactivation of the Caribbean region. The arrival of cruise ships benefits multiple activities in Cartagena along a chain of services that ends up increasing the income of the inhabitants and generating new job opportunities,” said Maria Ximena Lombana, head of MinCIT.
Cartagena’s cruise terminal is responsible for 90 direct jobs, plus 300 tour guides.
According to MinCIT, in 2019, leisure cruises to Colombia created 747 direct and 1,886 indirect jobs. Lombana reported that inter-institutional work made it possible to establish biosafety protocols for managing and controlling the risk of COVID-19 in activities related to the arrival, stay and departure of passenger ships.
Resolution 1123 of July 29, 2021 establishes guidelines for the maritime and port sector, specifically in the activities carried out by port captains, marinas, nautical bases and port facilities, and other facilities where passengers or crew members board and disembark. It also establishes directions for other actors involved, such as the passengers themselves, port operators, shipping agencies, travel agencies, tourist guides, those who transport those who disembark on land, and other providers of related services.
Photo courtesy Windstar Cruises