The Port of Seattle has declared its 2022 cruise season a success that shattered new records and achieved new milestones in economic impact, environmental initiatives and community investment efforts.
The port said Oct. 24 that the cruise season brought 1.28 million revenue passengers, or 640,000 individual travelers, to the port on an Alaskan cruise, a new passenger volume record that netted a 6% uptick over the 2019 volumes.
“In 2020, when the port and region lost the expected revenue of an entire cruise season, we outlined a recovery strategy to bring the industry back healthier and stronger than ever,” Port Executive Director Steve Metruck said.
An added benefit to the quicker-than-anticipated bounce back of the Seattle-Alaska cruise itinerary allowed the port to bolster its Youth Career Launch Pilot program funding by $2 million. The program now has $4.1 million in funds for the next three years, the port said.
“More passengers means significantly more economic activity in our region,” Maritime Managing Director Stephanie Jones Stebbins remarked. “For local businesses that means more revenue for jobs and wages. The port directs additional revenue right back into our community and maritime industries. This year, I am especially proud that we were able to nearly double our investment in youth maritime workforce development.”
The port expects the demand for the Alaska itinerary and Seattle to be high in 2023.
“While slightly fewer ships will sail from Seattle in 2023, ship occupancy will continue to increase to an estimated 85% next year,” according to the port, adding that initial forecasts predict about 1.3 million revenue passengers (650,000 guests) for the season being planned between April 15 and Oct. 30.