The next cruise season in Brazil could be the biggest in the last 10 years, according to estimates by the Associação Brasileira de Navios Cruzeiros – the national arm of the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA). In the 2022/2023 season, which runs from October 29 this year to April 20, 2023, eight ships will take 674,000 passengers to destinations inside and outside the country.
The estimates for this year also exceed the levels of the 2019/2020 season, the last one before the pandemic, when there were 470,000 passengers. For the president of CLIA Brasil, Marco Ferraz, the numbers for 2022 are an indication of the resumption of investments by companies in Brazil.
“We have a huge amount of tourists with a repressed desire to travel and this is having a positive impact on Brazil. And this year, unlike last year, we are going to receive international ships again. In other words, Brazil returns to the route of the most important shipping companies”, says Ferraz.
In addition to the eight cabotage vessels, which are moored for more than a month, the country will also receive 35 long-haul vessels, departing from international destinations, stopping in Brazil and following their itineraries. They will make 309 stops in 45 destinations, such as Amazonas, Bahia, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo and Rio Grande do Sul, with great expectations of local economic impact.
The cabotage ships will depart from the ports of Itajaí, in Santa Catarina, Maceió, in Alagoas, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, in Bahia, and Santos, in São Paulo. The vessels will travel 160 itineraries and 486 stopovers in 17 destinations; 14 nationals and three outside the country – Buenos Aires, in Argentina, and Montevideo and Punta del Este, in Uruguay.
Impact on the economy
The president of CLIA Brazil, Marco Ferraz, highlights that the gains generated by the circulation of cabotage ships will be close to R$ 350 million, with 50 to 100 thousand passengers during the season. Studies calculate that the daily impact of a tourist in the country is R$ 557 and for every 13 passengers, a job is created.
Ferraz explains that more than 95% of the passengers on long-haul ships are foreigners and that, on average, the expenses of this public are higher than those of Brazilians, around 100 to 150 euros, around R$ 830. Despite the resumption, Ferraz says that Brazil still has a great tourist potential to be explored.
“As good as this passenger growth data is, Brazil still has a lot to grow. If we divide these 600 thousand cruise passengers by the country’s population, we see that they do not even represent 0.5% of the total. That is, it is still a very low penetration. In the United States, for example, this number reaches 4%, in Australia, 6%. If we reach 2% here, we will already have around 4 million passengers”, says the president of CLIA Brasil.
For PUC-Rio economist Roberto Simonard, all the logistics to support ships has a positive impact on the Brazilian economy because it generates jobs and income in the country.
Gilberto Braga, economist at Ibmec RJ, recalled that tourism was one of the sectors most affected by the pandemic, which generated a repressed demand for this type of trip.
“The increase in demand has to do with this deprivation that people have gone through and the cruise tourism route fits exactly that. Therefore, it is a great recipe for the coastal cities that are served by these routes”, says the economist.
Resumption of travel, stoppage by the pandemic
In 2022, the cruise season resumed on March 5, due to the improvement in the epidemiological scenario in the country. The return of the trips happened after consecutive suspensions. On December 31, 2021, Anvisa recommended the temporary suspension of cruises, with an initial forecast of resumption for January 21, 2022.
On January 12, the health agency recommended to the Ministry of Health and the Civil House of the Presidency of the Republic the definitive suspension of the cruise season due to the evolution of Covid cases and, in particular, the “vertiginous increase in the number of of cases on vessels”.
The suspension was voluntarily extended by the companies to February 4th, then to the 18th of the same month, and finally to March 4th.
Source: CNN Brasil