The cruise season in Uruguay is in full swing and according to local authorities, some 241 calls are expected this summer. On one day three cruises docked in Montevideo, the MSC Preziosa with 4,300 passengers, the Azamara Pursuit with 379 passengers, and the Oosterdam with 1,200 passengers.
The head of the Brazilian chapter of CLIA, Cruise Lines International Association, Marco Ferraz announced a record call of cruise vessels this coming season, the highest in ten years, both in Uruguay and Argentina. CLIA is considered the largest commercial association of the cruise industry with a membership of 55 companies.
Uruguayan authorities are forecasting a promising cruise season for next Summer, according to Tourism Undersecretary Remo Monzeglio, who confirmed there were so far 130 confirmed reservations for calls in Montevideo and 57 for Punta del Este.
The Atlantic coast resort Punta del Este received on Saturday the first cruise vessel since the start of the pandemic. The expedition cruise Viking Jupiter was scheduled to travel to Buenos Aires, but since it had stopped at Cape Verde islands in Africa, Argentina is demanding a fourteen day quarantine before letting anybody in the country.
As happened with MSC Cruises, Costa Cruises announced on Friday the cancellation of its 2021/2022 cruise season in Uruguay and Argentina. Last-minute differences with Brazilian officials forced the Italian cruise company which belongs to the Carnival Group, to redraft the itinerary of Costa Fascinosa that was expected in Uruguay and Argentina.
MSC cruises announced on Tuesday that it was cancelling its 2021/22 cruise season to Argentina and Uruguay. “Since the beginning of the year and continuing on the path outlined last year to achieve the safe resumption of cruise operations in Buenos Aires, MSC Cruises has been working closely with authorities from Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay to reestablish protocols and joint operation rules for the 2021/22 season from Buenos Aires and Montevideo under the new normality”, pointed out a release from the Swiss company.
Uruguay is expecting some 200 cruise calls this 2019/20 season, which is 30% higher than in 2018/19, while Montevideo has become an exchange port for incoming and outgoing cruise passengers, given its good services and connectivity, announced Tourism minister Liliam Kechichian during the official launching of the current season.
Uruguay is expecting 172 cruise calls this season, of which 105 in Montevideo and 67 in the Atlantic resort of Punta del Este, representing a 24% increase over the 2017/2018 season. This includes the arrival of three new cruise companies, while two others, Costa and Norwegian have chosen Montevideo for the change of passengers.
After several seasons of negative growth, 2017/18 looks to be the turning point, with 165 calls, up 15, and 300.000 visitors in Uruguay, (Montevideo and Punta del Este) anticipated Tourism minister Liliam Kechichian during the symbolic launching of the season in Montevideo.
The 2016/17 cruise season officially begins this week in Uruguay with the arrival of MS Zaandam and Insignia. Zandam belonging to Holland America Line with capacity for 1.432 passengers usually calls several times in Montevideo during the season.