Port of New Orleans sets cruise passenger record

NEW ORLEANS – Port NOLA welcomes more than one million cruise passengers for the fifth year in a row.

In 2018, the Port of New Orleans set a new record with nearly 1.2 million passengers traveling via the port.

Port NOLA is the sixth-largest cruise port in the United States.

“The popularity of New Orleans as a cruise port and our commitment to customer service proves again why Port NOLA is a catalyst for local businesses,” said Brandy D. Christian, Port NOLA President and CEO. “With an increase in passengers, we see those increased benefits – from florists and food wholesalers to hotel and restaurant staff. Our homeport status is important for the local economy and helps us fulfill our role as an economic engine for Louisiana.”

According to a recent economic impact study, the local economy earns close to $1.3 million annually, thanks to ship crews and passengers.

The port is expected to do even better in the coming years, with the addition of several new and larger ships.

In early 2020, Port NOLA will welcome the 2,700-passenger Disney Wonder. This ship will embark on a variety of Caribbean and Bahamian cruises from New Orleans – marking the first time Disney Cruise Line will have a homeport in Louisiana.

The Port’s most prolific cruise tenant, Carnival Cruise Line, is making some big changes. The Carnival Triumph will be replaced with the larger Carnival Valor for four and five day sailings. And the Carnival Glory will sail seven-day, year-round itineraries.

“Port NOLA is one of Carnival’s most popular homeports and the Carnival Valor and Carnival Glory are wonderful ships that provide a wide array of exciting dining, beverage, entertainment and activity choices,” Christian said. “As demand for cruises continues to grow, our cruise line partners are responding by deploying newer ships with more capacity and amenities.”

The 4,000-passenger Norwegian Breakaway, also sails seven-day cruises from our port. But in November 2019, Norwegian will be replacing the Breakaway with its newer sister ship, the Norwegian Getaway.

Royal Caribbean International returned in December 2018 with it’s 2,050-passenger Vision of the Seas.

Port NOLA also allows guests to travel along the Mississippi River on the five homeported riverboats.

American Cruise Lines offers inland cruises on the Queen of the Mississippi and the America. The company’s third riverboat, the American Song, will be replaced this year by her new sister ship American Harmony.

The American Queen Steamboat Company also homeports the American Queen and the American Duchess.

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