The latest cruise ship from Saga Cruises, the highly anticipated Spirit of Discovery will make her maiden call to Cobh on Friday 19th July.
As Afloat's Jehan Ashmore wrote yesterday, this brand new, luxury boutique British liner carries 999 passengers on board and was recently named by the Duchess of Cornwall, at an official naming ceremony in Dover.
Also as Afloat reported earlier, the Cork Harbour destination for the Spirit of Discovery was this week voted one of the world's top stopovers.
Saga Cruises have a rich history calling to the Port of Cork and have included Cobh on their British Isles cruise itinerary for many years now, as well as Belfast and Dublin. To mark the maiden calls to Dublin, Belfast and Cork, the ports and Excursions Ireland jointly commissioned a special shamrock magnet for every passenger on the inaugural cruise.
Brendan Keating, Chief Executive of the Port of Cork said: ‘It’s an honour to welcome Saga Cruises latest cruise ship, Spirit of Discovery to Cobh. This new luxury liner, is great example of high end boutique cruising and we very much look forward to working with Saga to ensure Spirit of Discovery becomes a regular caller to Cobh.’
Spirit of Discovery is the 60th of 102 calls this cruise season, a record year for the Port of Cork with over 200,000 passengers’ anticipated.
On average, cruise ship passengers spend €81 during their time in Cork; with 42% of this money being spent on shopping, 32% on excursion travel and 17% on food and drink. Typically crew spend approximately €29, with most of the money being spent on food and drink and/or shopping.
The increased cruise calls to Cork are indicative of the wider global cruise business which has seen huge growth. In 2018 an estimated 27.2 million people took a cruise on over 450 cruise ships worldwide. With the global cruise ship order book for new build contracts reaching 113 ships between now and 2027, Cork cruise business is set to grow further in the coming years and the Port of Cork is eager to attract these new ships.