The Philippines is getting ready for what it anticipates would be a record-breaking 2023 cruise season.
A record 30 liners are scheduled to call at the ports of the country, expected to bring ~128,000 passengers. Expected cruisers in 2023 represent a 56% increase in comparison with the numbers recorded in 2019.
According to Verna Buensuceso, assistant secretary for product & market development and OIC undersecretary for tourism development, it certainly appeared that revenge travel was real.
Seabourn Cruises will send its first ship, Encore, to the Philippines since the COVID shutdown, arriving on February 9th with ~600 guests. Seabourn Encore will stop in Puerto Princesa (Palawan Island) and Coron (Busuanga Island) prior to arriving in Manila for shore trips and then on to Boracay Island.
Silversea Cruises is also sailing back, with Silver Shadow arriving at Kalanggaman Island, Romblon, Bohol, and Manila.
Although fewer cruise ships will be sailing to the Philippines in 2023 compared to 2019, a number of expedition ships will make multiple calls to different ports and islands throughout the year.
New destinations in 2023 include Salomague-Ilocos, Kalanggaman Island (Leyte), and Romblon. The port of Bohol is also becoming popular among cruisers.
A positive note is also the development of the Port of Salomague (Cabugao, Ilocos Sur), accommodating large ships of 3,000+ people.