San Diego will see cruise ships return this fall for the first time in over a year and a half.
On Monday, Holland America Cruise Line, the San Diego Board of Port Commissioners and city and tourism leaders announced plans to bring cruising back to San Diego this fall.
Port of San Diego Chairman Michael Zucchet stated that the calendar for the fall season is filling up.
“We expect to have anywhere from 70 to 80 cruise calls starting in September or October for the season, which is obviously down from pre-COVID levels but that’s a fairly healthy come back,” Zucchet says.
This announcement means a big positive impact on the San Diego community.
It is estimated that they have lost $282 million since March 2021 due to canceled cruises.
According to the Port of San Diego, each season, each ship that docks locally contributes $300,000 to the local economy.
“Usually what happens is out of town visitors will stay overnight the night before and then oftentimes, they’ll stay in San Diego when they come back to dock. So, we can get pre and post-stays out of it,” explained Julie Coker, president and CEO of the San Diego Tourism Authority.
In Order to Cruise
98% of crew members and 95% of passengers will need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 before a ship can sail. This is according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Holland America’s Koningsdam ship arrived at he port in San Diego Monday morning so crew members could be given their second doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, administered by Sharp HealthCare. The ship is scheduled to begin its first season homeporting in San Diego for cruises to Mexico and Hawaii on Oct. 24.
Back in May, Sharp offered cruise ship employees their first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at the Port of San Diego’s B Street Terminal. This marked the first port in California to offer the vaccine to cruise line staff. According to Sharp, 450 crew members from three ships were vaccinated.
Two other cruise ships will also be docking in San Diego in the coming days so their crews can receive their second doses.
Stay tuned for more information as it becomes available.