San Diego Port Anticipating Its Busiest Cruise Season Since 2010

Holland America Line’s Zuiderdam cruise ship while anchored at the Port of San Diego. Photo courtesy Holland America Line.

The Port of San Diego’s new cruise season has set sail and business is bouncing back, according to the POSD.

This season is poised to be the port’s busiest since 2010 with 140 cruises scheduled, up 45% from 2021, with all sailings at or near full capacity, bringing about 460,000 passengers.

San Diego is California’s third busiest cruise port after Long Beach and Los Angeles.

“The Port of San Diego’s cruise business is definitely experiencing a rebound and we expect continued growth,” Port of San Diego Chairman Dan Malcolm said. “We’re pleased to be welcoming our cruise customers back to San Diego and to share how wonderful our port is to our cruise passengers. This season’s business will be a great boost to our regional economy.”

The port’s new cruise season officially began Sept. 19 with the arrival of Silversea Cruises’ Star Breeze. The Star Breeze cruised to Tahiti on a 13-day voyage. It was followed by the Disney Wonder arriving on Sept. 23. Disney Cruise Line is more than doubling its sailings from San Diego this season, moving from 16-24 per season to 51. Princess Cruises is also adding new business to San Diego with 13 sailings and is homeporting in San Diego for the first time ever.

The full cruise schedule features long-term Port of San Diego partners Holland America Line and Disney Cruise Line, as well as Princess Cruises, Silversea Cruises, Celebrity Cruises and Norwegian Cruise Line. Voyages from MSC Cruises, Fred Olsen Cruise Lines, Scenic Luxury Cruises, Oceania Cruises, and American Queen Voyages are also on the calendar.

Itineraries include voyages to the Mexican Riviera, Hawaii, the Panama Canal, and the California Coast. There is also a 20-day Mexican Riviera and Central America cruise; a 25-day Pacific crossing to Japan; and a 35-day voyage to Hawaii, Tahiti and the Marquesas.

The Port of San Diego’s two cruise ship terminals on B Street and Broadway piers are located on the North Embarcadero in downtown, offering access to city attractions like the Maritime Museum of San Diego, the Midway Museum, and waterfront hotels and restaurants.

The port is also making some major repairs and improvements to its B Street Cruise Ship Terminal. A project to install a new curtain wall to extend the life and long-term stability of the pier structure is underway.

Additionally, shore power capacity is being doubled and the port begins connecting two cruise ships simultaneously this fall. And in 2024, the port is expected to begin construction on a $5 million project to make interior improvements to the B Street Cruise Ship Terminal.