Waves of cruisers and money from Seattle-Alaska voyages

By ,   March 10, 2015 ,   Cruise Industry

The Port of Seattle is ready to kick off the Alaska 2015 cruise season. It will not be as high in passenger numbers as previous years, but Seattle is expecting around 900,000 guests and 192 sailings.

Seven lines will base their cruise ships in Seattle port mostly for week-long, round-trip voyages to Southeast Alaska. Holland America will even offer some 14-day Alaska cruises.

Running from early May through late September, the Seattle-Alaska season brings travelers and money flowing into the city. In 2014 cruises brought USD 407.8 million in business revenue into the port’s local economy.

Voyages also bring many visitors to Seattle attractions, such as the summer-weekends Pike Place Market, since most sailings start and end on Saturdays and Sundays. The ships set sail from Magnolia’s Smith Cove terminal and downtown’s Bell Street terminal. Holland America’s ms Westerdam has been a regular at Smith Cove. The ship kicks off 2015 season with first sailing on May 2.

The cruise industry of Seattle has surged from its 1999 small start, when there were only 6 sailings and 6,615 cruisers; by 2010, one of the boom years of the port, with 931,698 guests.

The last Alaska cruise will depart Seattle port on September 27. Vancouver, B.C. boasts more lines based at its port, but the passengers’ number is expected to be lower and similar to the one last year - 812,000.