St. Maarten Port at Seatrade Cruise Global – Home porting would have positive effect

POSTED: 03/21/16 7:18 PM

St. Maarten News – Port St. Maarten officials attended the Seatrade Cruise Global in Fort Lauderdale Broward County Convention Center in Florida this week.

Seatrade Cruise Global is the leading annual global business-to-business event for the cruise industry, which brings together buyers and suppliers for a four-day conference and three-day exhibition. The conference draws more than 11,000 registered attendees, over 800 exhibiting companies from 93 countries and more than 300 international journalists. Experts, leaders and thought-makers of the cruise industry from the world’s largest cruise companies are the highlight of the conference.

The conference programs offer attendees a comprehensive roster of panel discussions and workshops featuring experts, leaders and thought-makers from the cruise industry.

On Monday the conference touched on Shorex and the rise of Voluntourism. The latter is one of the fastest growing areas of travel with cruise lines and tour operators meeting these trends by offering volunteering opportunities or “social impact” travel. Conference attendees learnt how ports can adapt and cater to the voluntourism trend.

The second topic covered on Monday was seasonality and its impact on deployment. The cruise industry is challenging the conventions of seasonal deployment. How far can the cruise season in traditional areas be extended and what are the challenges that this strategy throws up for cruise liens and destinations?

The two aforementioned are very interesting to the Port St. Maarten delegation attending the conference which includes Port Management and Supervisory Board of Directors.

Port St. Maarten discussed with cruise stakeholders during the four-day conference onshore developments, inland passenger and crew spending, deployment of vessels and home porting.

Home porting would have a positive spin-off for the destination whereby cruise passengers would be spending two to three days prior to boarding the vessel for their cruise and upon return.

On Tuesday port officials attended the State of the Global Cruise Industry, which looked at the Cuba, expansion in Asia and other geo-political issues affecting the cruise industry. The world’s chief executives of the largest cruise companies including Carnival, Royal Caribbean Cruises, Norwegian Line, and MSC Cruises, examined the aforementioned.

There was also a presentation and panel discussion related to the State of the Industry: Upscale Cruising. Panelists examined how upscale operators are meeting costly technology demands, such as free Wi-Fi, and how they’re differentiating their brands in today’s market.

The third workshop was on Global Ports and Terminals: Globalization Examined. This focused on the particular challenges of creating the right shore side facilities to match the needs of larger and more sophisticated ships, and how are they being addressed by the world’s leading cruise ports.

The other topic addressed on Tuesday was Cybercrime on the High Seas: How Cyber Attacks Occur and What You Can Do About Them. This presentation featured an expert on maritime cyber threats and an IT security executive from one of the major cruise lines discussed the latest attacks on maritime organizations, the threat actors who might target the shipping industry, and the specific methods that cyber criminals could use to target ships and their supporting networks.

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