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Yucatán’s Cruise Ship Arrivals to Increase 20 Percent in 2020



The close of October 2019 saw a gathering of key public figures and cruise-industry officials at the Port of Progreso, located on the north coast of Yucatán, Mexico.

In the company of Yucatán State Governor, Mauricio Vila Dosal; Michelle Fridman, State Secretary of Tourism Development; and Julián Zacarías, mayor of Puerto Progreso; Richard Sasso, president of Swiss-based MSC Cruises of America, made the official announcement on October 31, 2019, that MSC Cruises would be bringing its business to Yucatecan Puerto Progreso beginning in November 2020.

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With a capacity of 2,340 passengers, 721 crew members and a planned total of 41 arrivals for the 2020-2021 season, the MSC Armonia vessel will deliver an additional 95,000 visitors to Yucatán by sea in 2021, representing an increase of 20 percent over the port’s current cruise ship arrival numbers.

According to Pasillo Turistico, the Puerto Progreso’s estimated close-of-2019 figures are 142 total cruise ship arrivals with 465,000 passengers—an increase of five percent over 2018.

The Herald of Mexico reported that Sasso cited the region’s safety, cleanliness, the warmth and fortitude of the Yucatecan people and the commitment of the State Government as prime considerations when committing to MSC Cruise’s inclusion of Yucatán in one of its itineraries.

Governor Vila Dosal pointed out that such developments are the direct result of promotional work on the part of the State, including its presentation at Annual Conference of Cruises and Trade Fair of the FCCA in Puerto Rico last year, where the alliance between Yucatán and MSC Cruises first began to form.

“We have a great opportunity to show the improvements in the port of Progreso and if all together we do the job well, this cruise theme can only grow, and that means more jobs in Yucatán and more economic spill that permeates the entire state: in Mérida, in the archeological zones, in all the tourist centers, ” said Vila Dosal.

Other international cruise lines that are soon to call at Puerto Progreso include the following:

— Viking Cruise Line’s Viking Sky will make its first Yucatecan appearance since 2017 with an onboard complement of 930 passengers and 465 crew

— Italian Costa Cruise Lines’ Costa Luminosa will present with 2,712 passengers and 1,050 crew

— In February 2020, British-American luxury cruise line Silversea’s Silver Shadow is expected to carry 466 visitors and 295 crew members to the destination

— February 2020 will also see P&O Cruise’s Aurora vessel arrive with 2,258 passengers and 850 crew members

— In January 2021, a pilot Disney Cruise Line arrival has been confirmed, sailing aboard the Disney Wonder, with 2,456 passengers and a crew of 947, with a view towards maintaining future operations

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