Port Charlottetown (REI-Prince Edward Island, Canada) is set to welcome 91 cruise ships, 150,000+ passengers and 63,000+ crew members to the island’s capital city in 2023.
This is the largest number of passenger arrivals in the history of the port and an impressive 40% increase over the scheduled arrivals in 2022.
Mike Cochrane, Chief Executive Officer of the Charlottetown Harbour Authority said they were delighted to release the 2023 cruise schedule and look forward to working alongside their incredible partners in tourism as they prepared for a banner season.
He added that the recent addition of a 2nd berth and their ongoing work to enhance their facilities and the waterfront reinforced Port Charlottetown as "a premier cruise destination."
As in previous years, the majority of the cruise ships scheduled to arrive in the Port will do so during September & October. The walkable downtown of Charlottetown and its proximity to central PEI make it easy for passengers to explore everything the Island has to offer.
According to Kelly Murphy, Director of Marketing & Cruise Development for the Charlottetown Harbour Authority, cruise passengers consistently ranked Port Charlottetown amongst the top ports of call in Canada and for good reason.
“We really want to showcase the front-row experience to unforgettable memories that Port Charlottetown affords. Our incredible waterfront and historic downtown are mere steps away as passengers disembark, making it easy to explore our vibrant city. Paired with high-quality excursions beyond the city passengers can get a true taste of the Island in one immersive day.”
This season's largest cruise ship to arrive in Charlottetown is MSC Meraviglia, which has passenger capacity ~4500 plus ~1500 crew. The liner will make 3 calls to the port in 2023. By size, the biggest ship to call on the Port in 2023 will be the 333-m NCL's Norwegian Joy, which carry 3804 passengers. This year’s schedule also includes 15x two-ship and 6x three-ship days.
According to Minister of Economic Growth, Tourism and Culture Bloyce Thompson, the electrifying energy and economic benefits cruise ships brought to the province were unmatched.
“The Island’s cruise industry had a $42.2M economic impact in 2019. With passenger numbers in 2023 surpassing 2019, it is anticipated that the industry will continue to contribute significantly to the Island’s economy.”
Port Charlottetown and the tourism partners are currently capitalizing on the growing reputation of the island as a premier cruise destination, with a number of initiatives in the works to enhance the guest experience and showcase the best of PEI. One such project is the development of a digital walking map of Charlottetown and digital kiosks, which is being created by Port Charlottetown/Discover Charlottetown.
In addition to a record-breaking cruise season, 8 ships will make inaugural calls to Port Charlottetown. This year's season will wrap up with a call from Oceania Insignia on November 4th, 2023.