Two tourists disembarking the Golden Princess Cruise Ship in Ogden Point today got an unexpected surprise.
They were selected by Greater Victoria Harbour Authority as the six millionth cruise ship passenger to Ogden Point. To celebrate, the couple were given a variety of prizes donated by local businesses, and free admission to several tourist attractions.
“Victoria is Canada’s busiest cruise ship port of call, and we wouldn’t have been able to welcome more than six million without the help of many in our community,” said Ian Robertson, CEO of the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority.
Victoria’s cruise ship industry has boomed in the last decade, with the number of ships arriving in Victoria more than doubling since 2002.
In the 2015 season, Ogden Point will welcome more than 513,000 passengers from 230 cruise ship calls. It’s estimated the industry provides $100 million per year to the local economy, supporting nearly 900 jobs.
For their part, Port Metro Vancouver is expecting 800,000 passengers this season on 227 visits by 32 vessels.
And when they get off the ships, businesses are optimistic the low dollar will encourage tourists to spend more money than usual.
“For those that realize what a great value Canada is currently, most people spend a little more on dining and retail and various attractions,” says Danya Miller of Tourism Vancouver.