The visit by TUI Cruises’ luxury cruiser Mein Schiff 1 on 22 October marked the end of the Port of Helsinki’s exceptional international cruise season. Last year, international cruise traffic was completely halted by the coronavirus pandemic and subsequent travel restrictions for a period that ended up lasting nearly one and a half years. As a result, on this second year of the pandemic the international cruise season did not start until early August, when internal border control between Schengen Area countries was discontinued.
During the exceptionally short cruise season, the Port of Helsinki recorded 14 cruise ship visits, which provided nearly 11,000 international cruise passengers with a chance to experience Helsinki and the metropolitan area.
Of these passengers, 80% were from Germany, 11% were from the UK and 6% were from the US.
Compared to pre-COVID numbers, the figures recorded for this season were modest. Helsinki’s peak year for cruise traffic was 2019, when the city was visited by a total of 605,000 cruise passengers.
“We believe that cruise traffic will recover to near pre-COVID levels in the next season, at least in regard to the number of cruise ship visits. Helsinki offers high quality, experiences and reliability to international passengers, which is sure to be appreciated in the future as well,” estimates Harbour Master Staffan Teromaa from the Port of Helsinki.
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