Lanka Tourism to Capture Cruise Tourism!

Sri Lanka Tourism in a new initiative has ventured out to capture the fast growing Cruise Tourism, the new market segment with 21.7 million guests worldwide.
Chairman of Sri Lanka Tourism Promotions Bureau (SLTPB) Rohantha Athukorala said Sri Lanka Tourism has chalked a new marketing plan to get the slice of the Cruise Tourism market where the island is registering 50,000 plus in 2015.

For the first time Sri Lanka Tourism will be present at the top B2B cruise fair Sea trade Cruise Asia hosted by Busan Port Authority, Busan Metropolitan City, Korea Tourism Organization and Korea Marine Leisure Network on the 11-13th June 2015.

The event will feature a showcase exhibition, conference and travel agent training. The conference will focus on the growing momentum for cruise tourism in Asia as well as cruise shipbuilding today and in the future.

Sri Lanka’s delegation will include industry veteran Bernie Dole and ten leading operators in Sri Lanka for the top cruise liners of Celebrity, Royal Caribbean, MSC which constitute over fifty percent of the cruise liner market globally.

According to Chairman Athukorala SLTPB will sponsor one of the segments at the conference where top speakers will address the sessions.

Alan B. Buckelew Chief Operations Officer, Carnival Corporation & Plc, Michael Hackman, Marine Operations and New Ship Building, Genting Hong Kong Limited, Anthony H. Kaufman, Asia Operations, Princess Cruises, Ki-tack LIM President, Busan Port Authority, Zinan Liu Vice President China & North Asia, RCCL, & Chairman, CLIA North Asia, Oliviero Morelli President, Japan, MSC Cruises are expected to be invited for speeches.

The sea trade Cruise Asia conference programme provides an opportunity to assess the pace and direction of growth in the world’s fastest growing cruise sector and for a country to engage the key itinerary planners to include Sri Lanka into the future cruise itineraries said chairman Athukorala who believe that this segment can be developed to cross the 100,000 visitor mark within the next two years.

The cruise travel business better known as the ‘floating marine resorts of the world’ that attracts the most wealthy globally has doubled in business for Sri Lanka with 14 cruise liners calling the country in 2012/13 registering visitor arrivals of 19,615 cruise travelers whilst in 2013/2014 Sri Lanka attracted 22 cruise liners into Sri Lanka with visitor numbers going up to 27,317.

This year the numbers have spiked to 40 cruise liner arrivals and overall visitors expected to be 50,000 plus in 2015, said Athukorala.