Category Archives: Cruises

Cruise Club to represent Dubai Business Events

Cruise Club has been appointed as the representative in India for Dubai Business Events, a division of Dubai Tourism and the city’s official convention bureau. Based out of Mumbai, Cruise Club’s role is to increase Dubai’s market share from incentive groups and corporate meetings. The team has already begun its delegate boosting activity, promoting upcoming events such as the Lions Clubs International ISAAME Forum, set tot take place in December at Dubai World Trade Centre. Issam Kazim, CEO, Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DCTCM) said, “India remains a top priority for us, now consistently being the largest source market for tourists to Dubai. This is a feat achieved through years of establishing and building strong trade ties in the market, in addition to the execution of a segment-specific approach across India. Charson Advisory has played a great role in realising this feat, and I would like to take this opportunity to thank them for their consistently professional approach, enduring commitment and dependable work.”

Read More »

Mumbai Port Trust lays foundation stone for international cruise terminal

A top-level delegation led by Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister of Shipping, Road Transport & Highways and Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Govt of India, gathered inside Mumbai Port to lay the foundation stone for the new international cruise terminal. Mumbai Port Trust (MPT) proposes to handle 80 per cent of the cruise passengers that will arrive at the port once the terminal is complete. Sanjay Bhatia, Chairman, MPT, said, “As per our consultant’s report, we have the potential to bring in 30 lakh passengers. Based on that projection, we have prepared a second SOP on a national level. We have also recently exempted cruise passengers from e-visa and this is in line with our efforts to make immigration process for international tourists easier and faster. With the new terminal, the area of cruise terminal will be 4.15 lakh sq feet, almost 10 times bigger than what we have today.” Bhatia added that the new terminal will have all the facilities of the domestic airport. Also present at the ceremony were Devendra Fadnavis, Chief Minister, Maharashtra and Jaykumar Rawal, Minister of Tourism, Government of India.

Read More »

Mumbai Port to spend Rs 51 crore to revamp Sassoon Dock

Mumbai’s Sassoon Dock will soon become a tourist attraction once the upgradation project initiated by the Mumbai Port Trust is complete. Sharing details of this is Sanjay Bhatia, Chairman, Mumbai Port Trust, who says, “Sassoon Dock is getting a complete revamp. We are doing this in four phases. The first phase is just complete. The area that is known to be dirty is getting some sort of a status and upgrade. We are going to spend Rs 51 crore altogether on the revamping of Sassoon Dock.” Tenders have been invited and the work is expected to start in about three or four months, Bhatia said. “This is being done along with the state government and Sagarmala Project. Meanwhile, work has already started at the international cruise terminal whose foundation stone will be laid by the CM and the Shipping Minister on January 11. This will take about two years to get completed. Currently, the demolition work of two godowns is underway after which the construction work shall begin.”  

Read More »

Cruise tourists with e-visa exempted from biometric enrolment

In order to promote cruise tourism in the country, the Ministry of Home Affairs has, on request of the Ministry of Shipping, exempted cruise tourists arriving with e-visa from the requirement of biometric enrolment for a period of three years i.e. till December 31, 2020. This will make immigration clearance of such passengers faster, leaving them with more time to spend on shore.  The shipping ministry has been working towards simplifying the immigration clearance procedure and providing passengers a customer-friendly and hassle-free logistics process at Indian ports. E-visa has been in the place in five major ports of Mumbai, Mormugao, New Mangalore, Cochin and Chennai. Till now biometrics of passengers were required at port of first arrival for immigration clearance. However, with the existing facilities at the cruise terminals at these ports, the immigration procedure was taking more than the internationally accepted norm of clearing immigration for all cruise passengers in a maximum of 90 minutes. This is especially significant because, as per the schedule of arrivals of cruise ships for the current cruise season 2017-18 and 2019-20, many of the cruise ships coming to India are mega ships with 2000-4000 passengers on board. Most of these cruise passengers are expected to arrive on E-Visa, and biometric enrolment of all these passengers would slow down immigration clearance. Hence the need for the exemption.

Read More »

Mumbai Port Trust to build Rs 300-crore worth projects by June

The Mumbai Port Trust (MbPT) is planning to open up a slew of citizen-focused facilities being built at a cost of up to Rs 300 crore over the next six months, a senior official has said. “Many projects are in different stages of development and nearing completion. Works of around Rs 250-300 crore will be opened before the onset of the monsoon,” said Sanjay Bhatia, Chairman, MbPT. The port remains one of the biggest land owners in the cramped megapolis and is undertaking a slew of projects aimed at benefiting the citizens and also the travel, tourism and hospitality sectors. The projects to be completed include starting the ropax ship, which ferries both passengers and motor vehicles, from Mumbai to Mandwa for which a separate jetty and break water is being built, a ferry service connecting south Mumbai with Belapur in the satellite city of Navi Mumbai and beautification of the waterfront at Princess Dock. Bhatia said a domestic cruise terminal with restaurants will also be inaugurated, which is slated to handle a cruise service between the financial capital and Goa that will be starting soon. The projects to be inaugurated also include water taxis on the eastern waterfront, two floating restaurants at Gateway of India and one at Marine Drive, he said, adding that for deepening the tourism potential, a ferry service to the Kanhoji Angre island at Khanderi will also be started. The port is planning an event for the Rs 3090-crore International Cruise Terminal on January 11. It will take up to 18 months to complete the project that is aimed at upping the calls by global cruises to the country. MbPT is also working on starting …

Read More »

Azamara Club Cruises acquires Azamara Pursuit to expand fleet

Azamara Club Cruises has entered into an agreement to purchase the Azamara Pursuit, a ship that will complement the brand’s proposition further by taking travellers to destinations hitherto unexperienced. Come March 2018, TIRUN Travel Marketing, the exclusive India representative of Azamara Club Cruises will provide Indian travellers the opportunity to enjoy the most uniquely-curated destination experiences in the sister ship of Azamara Journey and Azamara Quest. Commenting on the acquisition, Ratna Chadha, Chief Executive, TIRUN Travel Marketing, said, “Azamara Pursuit will further add to the brand’s value as a cruise line that guarantees the best of aesthetics, experience and extravagance to travellers, bringing its guests the experience of a boutique hotel at sea. We are pleased to extend the opportunity to our guests to travel to destinations as exciting as Uruguay, Buenos Aires, Belfast, Akureyri and many more on this ship.” The Azamara Pursuit will be covering a total of 61 destinations, out of which 15 destinations have not been visited yet by any of Azamara’s ships. The ship will be travelling across all the seven continents, allowing travellers to experience an assortment of geographies and cultures.

Read More »

CLIA expects cruisers to seek ‘transformational’ experiences in 2018

The Cruise Lines International Association’s (CLIA) recently-released report ‘2018 State of the Cruise Industry Outlook’ offers an in-depth look at the cruise industry’s overall global economic impact as well as the trends impacting cruise travel in 2018. Joel Katz, Managing Director, CLIA Asia, said, “With an annual source market growth of more than 40 per cent, Asia is emerging as one of the most significant cruise destinations and cruise source markets in the world. Cruising is expected to capture a much larger percentage of the Asian population in the near future, which could catapult Asia’s share of the global market.” As part of the 2018 State of the Cruise Industry Outlook, CLIA forecast nine top cruise travel trends for the coming year. As per the report, travel agents continue to see a steady demand from consumers in planning and executing holidays. One of the trends reported in the study indicates that the next evolution of experiential travel sees travellers taking a step further to seek ‘transformational’ experiences. Some upcoming cruise itineraries include the opportunity to indulge in local cuisine, guided tours through small villages and even visits inside private homes.  

Read More »

NCL launches mobile app for clients

Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) has introduced the next generation of its booked guest mobile application – Cruise Norwegian. Andy Stuart, President and CEO, NCL, said, “Whether they’re 60 days from their sail date or in the middle of their cruise, Cruise Norwegian brings seamless access to a myriad of on board offerings, services and activities right into the palms of our guests’ hands. Once on board, the app will allow guests to continue customising their ideal cruise experience and view or manage their existing account information, allowing them to maximise their time and spend it on the things they enjoy the most.” The app features functions that will help passengers in the booking process, their time on and off the ship as well as stay connected with friends and family both on board and back home. Through the app, users can also preview and book shore excursions, make dining and entertainment reservations, purchase on board dining and beverage packages or special occasion packages before they cruise. It also provides directions to the port and with mobile online check-in functionality, guests can save time at the pier and have a paperless boarding process with mobile e-docs. The new app will be available on board Norwegian’s newest ship, Norwegian Bliss, when she launches in summer 2018.  

Read More »

CLIA announces new regional manager for Asia

Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) Asia has announced the appointment of Jiali Wong as its new Regional Manager for Asia, based in Singapore. With almost 10 years’ experience in tourism, Wong will be responsible for growing industry engagement in the region and supporting the continued growth of cruise. This includes responsibilities for event development and growing CLIA’s Executive Partner programme in the region. Wong is seconded from the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) and most recently headed the Cruise Business Development team at STB where she forged strong interest and networks in the cruise industry. Joel Katz, Managing Director (Australasia & Asia), CLIA, says, “This is a new dedicated position, designed to support our members as the cruise industry continues to expand across Asia. We’re looking forward to working with Wong as we intensify our focus on advocating, educating, and promoting on behalf of the industry in the region. While the Asian cruise market has grown tremendously over the past four years – it has the potential to catapult ahead of competing markets.”  

Read More »

Genting Dream to be home-ported in Singapore from Dec 3

Dream Cruises has announced that its inaugural vessel, Genting Dream, will be home-ported year-round in Singapore starting from December 3, 2017. This marks a first for Singapore to host a new and large-scale 151,300-tonne cruise ship year-round. The ship will call at more than 10 ports in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam during 2018. Naresh Rawal, Vice President Sales, Star Cruises, Dream Cruises & Crystal Cruises, added, “Apart from this, we are also waiting for the launch of World Dream sailing, the second ship under Dream Cruises, from Hong Kong. We also have something lined up for the new year with Crystal Air’s six-night itinerary that includes Sydney and Honolulu from December 30 to January 4, 2018.” The privately-owned luxury jet has the highest staff-to-guest ratio with Crystal Skye butlers, fine wines, Champagnes and premium spirits, networking area, a bar, 88 handcraft, fully-reclining Crystal Exclusive Class flatbed seats, state-of-the-art in-flight entertainment system and complimentary Wi-Fi.

Read More »