Cruise liners eyeing Indian ports

Operation of cruise liners from Indian ports is estimated to more than double by 2025, with a new cruise terminal coming up by 2020.

This would see an increase in the number of Indians opting for cruises from around 1.6 lakh now (or approximately 1.20% of the total cruise tourists a year), as per a survey done by the Ministry of Shipping. Firms operating cruise vessels had begun to see India as an emerging market after China, officials accompanying Italian cruise liner Costa Venezia said here on Friday.

The interest shown in operating from India was evident on the day as two cruise vessels of Costa Cruises, which owns 15 such vessels, lay berthed next to each other at Ernakulam Wharf. While Costa Luminosa brought in around 2,000 guests, Costa Venezia that can carry 5,000 people sailed in with 2,600 guests.

Costa Venezia was built with the Chinese in mind. The vessel was even chartered to host an Indian wedding, attended by 1,800 guests, including Bollywood actors. The feast was prepared by 75 chefs from around the world, the officials told mediapersons who were taken on a tour of the vessel.

On board are 350 Indian crew members. They include Chief Security Officer Sabu Joseph, a native of Vattaparambu, near Athani in Ernakulam. The vessel will set sail from here for Colombo and from there to countries in the South East Asia.

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Printable version | Jun 5, 2020 10:42:43 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/cruise-liners-eyeing-indian-ports/article26751279.ece

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