A record 1.15 million passengers boarded cruises through Port of New Orleans last year. Port officials expect an increasing demand the city adds more cruise lines and ships, including a new itinerary of Royal Caribbean in December.
According to a news release, the record of 2017 marks the 4th consecutive year cruise terminal traffic at city's port reached or surpassed 1M travelers. The cruise facilities at the port include Erato Street and Julia Street cruise terminals situated on the riverfront behind Outlet Collection at Riverwalk and Ernest N. Morial Convention Center.
A number of major cruise lines, including Carnival, Royal Caribbean and Norwegian will be relocating their ships to New Orleans in 2018-2019.
- Royal Caribbean returns to New Orleans in December after a 3-year hiatus from the port through its 2,435-passenger Vision of the Seas.
- The port city will get its biggest cruise ship ever when NCL (Norwegian Cruise Lines) relocates Norwegian Breakaway to New Orleans this November.
- The city's largest cruise operator, Carnival Cruise Lines, will swap out its local vessels in 2019, bringing Carnival Valor to replace Carnival Triumph, and Carnival Glory to replace Carnival Dream.
- In addition, riverboat cruise company American Cruise Lines will launch sailings from New Orleans aboard its 190-passenger American Song.
According to the news release, roughly 80% of passengers sailing on voyages from New Orleans come from outside Louisiana. More than 50% of travelers spent an average of 2 days in New Orleans either prior to or after the cruise.