It was a warm welcome on a cold morning as the first cruise ship of 2023 in Canadian waters pulled into Ogden Point yesterday.
“It’s great to have the cruise ships back because of the economic boom that it brings to the city,” Chamber CEO Bruce Williams told Black Press. “People disperse around the region — they stay downtown, they go to Butchart Gardens, they go to other attractions around (Greater Victoria) and they bring that whole energy that we need to get us back into the swing of things.”
The Greater Victoria Harbour Authority expects 850,000 passengers will visit Greater Victoria aboard 330 ships between now and October. The 209-foot Sapphire Princess can carry 2,600 passengers.
The industry injects about $130 million into our regional economy, helping many businesses beyond those that cater directly to passengers.
The next ship arrives April 21. And regardless of the temperature, it's a clear sign that business is heating up for our hospitality and tourism sectors.
Last week, the province announced it was contributing $9 million for the GHVA's efforts to bring shore power to their facilities. That will allow ships to use electricity rather than generators, cutting down on emissions and noise in the neighbourhood.