Dubai registers steep increase in number of cruise passengers

Dubai: The number of tourists who arrived at the Port Rashid cruise terminal increased by 55,000 in the cruise season that ended yesterday, compared with the previous season, a senior official at the Ministry of Interior said. The cruise tourism season runs from September to June Lieutenant Colonel Jasem Mohammad Foolaz, Director of Land and Sea Ports in Dubai, told Gulf News that the emirate has emerged as one of the prime destinations for cruise tourists around the world. "The number of tourists who came through Port Rashid in the latest season is 220,000 compared to 165,000 in 2008-2009," said Lt Colonel Foolaz. He said the tourists arrived on 153 ship calls. The number of tourists increased in 2009 to double the number who came by sea in 2008. "We expect the number of tourists will increase more in the coming season starting September," he said. Destinations Lt Col Foolaz said Port Rashid could receive three vessels per day. "The season usually closes on June 14 each year and starts again on September 21," he said. "We receive around 15 tourist vessels during one season." Most tourists come from Europe, Lt Col Foolaz said. "We make it easy for tourists here and they can apply for a visa on arrival at the port." Tourists often continue on by air after arriving by sea, and vice versa, he said. The seaports section of the Dubai Naturalisation and Residency Department completed more than two million transactions in two years at Dubai's seaports for tourists, travellers and sailors. "Out of the two million transactions, 462,635 transactions were done for tourists," he said . Lt Col Foolaz said the last cruise ship to enter Dubai in the season just concluded was the Dawn Princess, coming from Muscat. There are 1,875 tourists and crew aboard the Dawn Princess. The ship will depart for Egypt at the end of its stay in Dubai. "The Dawn Princess reached Port Rashid at 7am [yesterday] at the tourist terminal. Cruise ships usually go from Dubai to Abu Dhabi, to Bahrain, Fujairah and back to Dubai before they move on to the next destination," he said. He said some tourists stay here for a few days or more and some leave the same day to continue their travels. "Tourists of some nationalities can obtain their visit visas at the port while some need to obtain visas in advance. We offer 33 nationalities a one-month visa on arrival at the seaports," he said. By Bassma Al Jandaly, Senior Reporter https://gulfnews.com/business/dubai-registers-steep-increase-in-number-of-cruise-passengers-1.641259
Dubai registers steep increase in number of cruise passengers
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