Stockholm, passengers, cruise, 2018, 2017, 2016, sweden, turnaround, ships, Kapellskär
Photo: Ports of Stockholm

Stockholm: Record cruise pax, less turnarounds

The Swedish capital is seeing more cruise tourists than ever, but with fewer turnarounds this year.

As expected, the number of cruise passengers visiting Stockholm has increased again in 2018, setting a new record. During the cruise season, 268 vessels called at Stockholm’s ports, including a maiden cruise call this year at the new Port of Kapellskär.

As the season draws to a close, which happens on October 18 with the arrival of the AidaMar at Stadsgården, Ports of Stockholm has revealed that a total of 619,000 cruise passengers visited the city this year.

That is an increase on the 263 ships and 600,000 passengers seen during 2017, and 230 ships bringing 490,000 passengers in 2016.

However, the number of lucrative turnarounds, where a ships begins or ends its cruise – and where passengers then often spend an extra day and night on land benefiting the local tourist industry even further – declined this year to 67, from 73 in 2017 (57 in 2016).

“Stockholm is an extremely popular destination and passenger numbers are greater than ever before,” declares Stefan Scheja, cruise and ferry manager at Ports of Stockholm, adding that the majority of visitors are American and German and the third largest group comes from the UK.

Cruise survey
Over the course of the cruise season, which runs from April until October, an independent international survey has been carried out at several ports.

The results of this survey will be presented in detail later in the autumn and will yield such information as how much the visitors spend.

“Cruise passengers are very important to the Stockholm region and generate a huge amount of revenue through restaurant visits, overnight hotel stays, shopping, museum visits and much more,” says Stefan Hansson, chairman of the board at Ports of Stockholm.

In September, the Port of Kapellskär saw its first ever cruise ship call when one of the world’s largest cruise liners, MSC Meraviglia, dropped anchor and 3,500 guests travelled to Stockholm and coastal Norrtälje by bus.

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